Gender and Generational Division in EU Citizenship
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Gender and Generational Division in EU Citizenship

Edited by Trudie Knijn and Manuela Naldini

Family law, gender equality, care arrangements and the consequences of demographic change have long been on the agenda of the European Union. However, these are coloured by national and cultural factors more than any other disputes, and form a barrier to the equalising of status for European citizens. Using an interdisciplinary approach, and bringing together law scholars, political scientists and sociologists, this book looks at the implications of the categorisation of identity in the European Union, and what they mean for the realisation of citizens’ rights throughout the EU.
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Chapter 4: National attitudes as a barrier to European citizenship rights? The case of parenthood and partnership rights for individuals in diverse family forms

Giulia M. Dotti Sani, Trudie Knijn, Manuela Naldini, Cristina Solera and Mara A. Yerkes


This chapter explores national attitudes towards civil and social rights across diverse family forms in Europe and the role of European Union in harmonizing these rights across Member States. It uses cross-national data from a pilot study among students in Denmark, Spain, Croatia, Italy and the Netherlands to investigate cross-country differences in these attitudes. It concludes that respondents from more traditional countries tend to privilege the rights of married heterosexual couples over other family forms than respondents in non-traditional countries. In more traditional countries, respondents were less likely to agree that equality on civil rights is necessary. In all countries, advocating a common legal framework across Europe regarding parenthood rights appears to be stronger, and in the field of partnership rights when it concerns civil unions rather than marriages, with no differences across family types. In the field of social rights, the support for a common legal framework across Europe is weaker in less traditional countries.

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