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Rethinking the Role Childhood SES Plays in Affecting Adult Health: Integrating Existing Theories with a Life Course Perspective on the Disablement Process
November 30, 2018 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
On Friday, November 30th, Scott Lynch, PhD, will present Rethinking the Role Childhood SES Plays in Affecting Adult Health: Integrating Existing Theories with a Life Course Perspective on the Disablement Process as part of the Carolina Population Center 2018-2019 Interdisciplinary Research Seminar series. Lynch is a Professor of Sociology and the Director of Training in the Population Research Institute at Duke University. His substantive research focuses on life course and cohort patterns in social inequalities in health in the US, by education, income, race, and region. His methodological research focuses on Bayesian methods in demography.
Lynch is hosted by Carolina Population Center Fellow and Center Director Elizabeth Frankenberg. Frankenberg, Professor of Sociology, has served as the Director of Carolina Population Center since 2017.
Mounting evidence indicates that childhood socioeconomic status (SES) has long-term effects on health in later adulthood. However, findings are mixed regarding how it influences health. Specifically, it is unclear whether childhood SES affects adult health only through its role in influencing adult SES or exerts an independent influence on adult health, net of adult SES. Drawing from life course perspectives on the disablement process, we advance and test a theory of “progressive mediation” which suggests that the extent to which childhood SES exerts an independent influence on adult health depends upon the seriousness of the health outcome being considered. We argue that childhood status can have strong residual influences on lesser health conditions and precursors to more serious conditions, while having weak, or no, residual influences on more serious health conditions. Lesser health conditions and precursors arise relatively early in adulthood, but adult socioeconomic resources provide a number of resources that can interrupt or postpone the disease development and disablement process that otherwise may stem from early adulthood conditions. Using longitudinal data from the Health and Retirement Study, we find robust support for this theory.
Instructors: To arrange for class attendance, contact Kate Allison (firstname.lastname@example.org) by the Monday before the seminar
Streaming may be available and must be arranged at least one week in advance.
This seminar is part of the Carolina Population Center’s Interdisciplinary Research Seminar Series.