238 Townshend Hall
1885 Neil Avenue Mall
Areas of Expertise
- Gender, Race, & Class
- Health & Medical
- Ph.D., Sociology, University of Texas at Austin
Areas of interest: Family, gender and sexuality, health, population, aging
Prof. Reczek’s research is situated in the fields of family, gender, and health. Her research focuses on articulating how gender, sexuality, and aging processes in family ties promote or deter health. A first strand of research explores how union status matters for health and health behavior for men and women in same-sex and different-sex unions. A second strand of research examines the parent-child tie, with a focus on the consequences of parent-child relationships for the well-being of both generations across the life course. A third strand of research explores how same-sex family structures shape child well-being. Prof. Reczek uses qualitative in-depth interview methods to ascertain processes, mechanisms, and meaning-making, and survey methods to ascertain large-scale population trends.
Family relationships—especially those with our intimate partners, parents, and children—are central aspects of our everyday lives. My research aims to understand the everyday dynamics of these family relationships, giving special attention to how the content, quality, and form of family ties matter for health and well-being. I’m especially interested in how gender and sexuality matter in family relationships as people age. For example, in my research on intimate ties, I ask: Why do men benefit from marriage more than women? How does marriage matter for men’s and women’s health in same-sex relationships? Does cohabitation protect health in similar ways as marriage? When is marriage bad for your health? In my research on parent-child ties, I ask: What typifies relationships between adult children and their parents? How does the parent-child tie change as both children and parents age? How do mothers and fathers experience parenthood, and how does this matter for their health? How and why does being in a same-sex family matter for children’s health?