Skip to content

Conference Paper BHPS-2007 Conference: the 2007 British Household Panel Survey Research Conference, 5 July -7 July 2007, Colchester, UK

The dynamics of social position: Allerednic and her parents' human capital -abstract-


Publication date



Using a BHPS-derived human capital measure as a social positional index:
1. Observing whole life-course dynamics (corresponds to intergenerational perspective).
2. Deploying “moral narratives”: flat descriptions of sequences of states or activities (Abbott, Chan & Halpin).
3. Focusing on interaction between life strategies and inherited social position.
4. Taking poor Allerednic (reverse Cinderella, princess scullerymaid) as a key example.
NEW FINDING: penalties for leaving workforce after birth of first child relative to staying, interact with women’s parents’ class situation:
1. For women with parents in top human capital quintile, relative penalties were falling from the 1930s to 1950s birth cohorts, to around 20%.
2. For women with parents in bottom quintile, relative penalties rising from 1920s to 1950s birth cohorts, from 50% to 75% 7 yrs after birth.
Conclude: (gendered) polarisation in intergenerational transmission of life chances……and the effect of this is intensified by the concurrent rise in marital dissolution.


Labour Market, Childbearing: Fertility, Social Capital, and Social Stratification



Research home

Research home


Latest findings, new research

Publications search

Search all research by subject and author


Researchers discuss their findings and what they mean for society


Background and context, methods and data, aims and outputs


Conferences, seminars and workshops

Survey methodology

Specialist research, practice and study

Taking the long view

ISER's annual report


Key research themes and areas of interest