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Religions 2014, 5(4), 1116-1131;

Marital Naming Plans among Students at Four Evangelical Colleges

Department of Sociology, Baylor University, One Bear Place #97326, Waco, TX 76798, USA
Department of Sociology, Western State Colorado University, Kelley Hall 220, 600 North Adams Street, Gunnison, CO 81231, USA
Department of Creative Writing, University of North Carolina at Wilmington, 601 S. College Road, Wilmington, NC 28403-5938, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 September 2014 / Revised: 6 November 2014 / Accepted: 11 November 2014 / Published: 21 November 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Studies in the Sociology of Religion)
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Despite increasingly egalitarian gender roles in the United States, when the wedding bells ring for heterosexual couples, husband and wife still commonly emerge sharing the man’s last name. Largely missing from previous studies of marital name change is the influence of religion. We examine the marital naming plans of 199 students from four Evangelical colleges. Nearly all these students planned to marry and more than 80% planned to follow the traditional naming pattern for their gender. Bivariate correlations and logistic regression models reveal that private prayer and more literal views of the Bible correspond to plans for a traditional marital surname. Yet, only a small minority of students evoked religious language to justify their surname choice. Gender roles, identity, and tradition were dominant themes in their explanations. Whether recognized or not, personal religiosity and the model of marriage cultivated in religious families guide the marital naming intentions of Evangelical students. Thus, religion operates as an invisible influence shaping ideals of marriage and family within Evangelical subculture. View Full-Text
Keywords: marital names; marriage; evangelicals; college marital names; marriage; evangelicals; college

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Dougherty, K.D.; Hulbert, M.; Palmer, A. Marital Naming Plans among Students at Four Evangelical Colleges. Religions 2014, 5, 1116-1131.

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