Trends in divorce acceptance and its correlates across European countries:
This study examines how the public acceptance of divorce has changed in European countries in recent decades. Taking advantage of the large-scale, comparative, and long-run measurement of value orientations in the European Values Study 1981-2017 it focuses on value change connected with divorce in a macro perspective. The article explores the acceptance of divorce in three aspects: 1) it measures and compares the trends in the acceptance of divorce in various European societies between 1981(1991) and 2017 and contrasts these trends with the data on divorce rates in these countries; (2) it explores the consistency/correlation between divorce attitudes and the affinitive value orientations associated in the broader set of values connected with the concept of the deinstitutionalisation of marriage; (3) it looks for the correlates of divorce acceptance and the changes in acceptance over time at the individual level (sex, education, cohort, family background, religiosity). Because of the descriptive nature of the research, no hypotheses are tested. The results show that divorce acceptance is rising over time in all EVS countries, and the acceptance is connected to divorce levels in given societies. Attitudes towards divorce form a consistent set of values together with other marriage deinstitutionalisation indicators. The acceptance of divorce correlates on an individual level with age, education, and religion, but surprisingly there is only weak difference between men and women.