Clocking out: Temporal patterning of retirement

Shin Kap Han, Phyllis Moen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

228 Scopus citations


This article draws on life history data of the cohorts of recent U.S. retirees to examine the temporal patterning of retirement. Three major dimensions - historical context, social heterogeneity, and, most important, biographical pacing, measured by cohort, gender, and career pathway, respectively - operate simultaneously, yet unevenly, to affect various aspects of the retirement process. Findings suggest that changes over the past few decades have undermined the regularity in retirement timing that was a product of the convergence of diverse institutional features, anchored by a large core of men on traditional career tracks. Focusing on retirement, our model underscores the multiplex nature of the temporal structuring of the life course.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)191-236
Number of pages46
JournalAmerican Journal of Sociology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1999


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