Examining Racial Variations in the Associations of Father's History of Incarceration with Son's Delinquency and Arrest in Contemporary U.S. Society.

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Roettger, Michael E.
Swisher, Ray. R.
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National Center for Family and Marriage Research.
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Incarceration has become an increasingly common event in the lives of young adult men and children. While father's history of incarceration (FHI) robustly correlates with delinquency and criminal justice involvement among sons, this research has not been contextualized to racial stratification present in the U.S. Addressing this gap in current literature, this study attempts to examine the effects of FHI on delinquency and adult arrest among national samples of white, African American, and Hispanic males from the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health. Given the large inequalities or differences in economic resources, family structure, and other conditions observed across these racial groups, this study also examines variation in the role of mediating mechanisms. Across racial groups, FHI remains a robust predictor of son's delinquency and adult arrest, controlling for a wide range of factors and hypothesized mediators. Differences in patterns of mediating effects and probabilities of arrest suggest considerable differences in intergenerational crime and delinquency processes across racial and ethnic groups in the U.S. (Author abstract)

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