What Makes a Wife Divorce Her Husband Before Court? Gender Differences in Petitioning Contested Divorce in Beijing


Location: 339 O'Shaughnessy

Ya Su 1

This project investigates gender differences in petitioning contested divorce before court in Beijing. Using 10,639 first-instance judgments (一审判决) from 16 basic-level courts (初级法院)under the jurisdiction of Bejing (2014-2016), we find that women are more likely than men to file the divorce petition before court if: (1) they reported domestic violence, substance abuse, the extramarital relationship on the part of their partners; (2) they have children; (3) they are younger than their husbands. We also find the likelihood of women, as opposed to men, initiated a contested divorce case declines as a marriage lasts longer. Our approach offers new insights in studying the gendered processes of divorce and extends our understandings and knowledge of changing family and marriage reality in contemporary China.

Research Workshop

Tuesday, April 10
339 O'Shaughnessy

Presenter: Ya Su

Ya (Sophia) Su is a third-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Sociology and a Gender Studies minor at the University of Notre Dame. Her research focuses on how gender intersects with family and marriage processes, such as romantic partner selection, household divisions of labor, parenthood, and marital disruptions to influence individual well-being as well as social inequality in both American and Chinese contexts. Her recent work examines how spouses' economic resources, marital satisfaction, and gender ideology influence the risk of divorce and whether these determinants of divorce are gendered.


Additional information: Research Workshops