American Legacies and the Variable Life Histories of Women and Men

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32 Citations (Scopus)


Sex differences in behavior are most interesting when they are the result of inherent differences in the operational rules motivating behavior and not merely a reflection of differing life history experiences. American men and women exhibit a few differences in testamentary patterns of property allocation that appear to be due to inherently different rules of allocation. Even when analyses control for resources and surviving kin configurations, women distribute their property among a greater number of individual beneficiaries than do men. The most striking differences in property allocation between men and women occur within the nuclear family and reflect differences in reproductive life span and the resulting reproductive conflicts between spouses that can endure beyond death.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)291-323
JournalHuman Nature
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1995


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