PSC Brown Bag Seminar: Sangeetha Madhavan

The PSC Brown Bag Series runs live and on Zoom this year, Mondays from noon to 1.

Speaker: Sangeetha Madhavan

Seminar Date: 2/5/24

Is Marriage Good for Maternal Mental Health: New Evidence from Nairobi, Kenya

Abstract: It has long been known that relationship quality and social support are key correlates of the mental health of mothers but the lion’s share of the scholarship is based in western contexts. It has only been in the past 5 years that researchers have started to pay attention to the social determinants of mental health in the African context. In this analysis, we draw on three waves of data from an ongoing longitudinal study in two low income communities in Nairobi, Kenya to unpack the complex relationship among the conditions of marriage, kinship support and maternal mental health. Using cross-lagged and moderated mediation models, we find some support for the protective role of unions for maternal mental health but limited evidence for the mediating role of kinship support.

Bio: Sangeetha Madhavan is Professor & Chair of African American Studies and Professor of Sociology at the University of Maryland. As a family demographer working in Africa, she has made substantial contributions to our understanding of extended family systems, parenting, household dynamics, and child and adolescent well-being. She currently serves as the Principal Investigator for an NICHD R01 project that seeks to understand the interactional effects of marriage and kinship support on young children’s development in poor urban communities in Nairobi, Kenya. Recent research has appeared in Population and Development Review, Population, Space and Place, Social Science Research and Journal of Marriage and Family. 



Feb 05 2024


12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/Los_Angeles
  • Date: Feb 05 2024
  • Time: 9:00 am - 10:00 am


Brown Bag seminars


ISR Thompson Room 1430
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