Using data from a national survey of urban Turks, we examine whether people report an understanding and acceptance of developmental idealism (DI) messages about the relationship between development and family characteristics. We examine two different aspects of DI, which the recent literature distinguish as original DI versus new DI. An important contribution of our paper is its focus on a detailed conceptualization and measurement of DI. We constructed six different scales that crosscut the original-versus-new distinction and the dimensions of correlation, causation, and expectations. We find that the vast majority of Turks endorse most DI beliefs, with variations in responses between the original and new aspects. Our analyses also suggest that region of residence, ethnicity, education, marriage and fertility, age, gender, and secularism are substantially, in some cases unexpectedly, related to DI beliefs. More educated people generally endorse DI less than those with less education, and the effects of marital and fertility status are also in a direction different from our theoretical predictions. Furthermore, the estimated effects of the explanatory variables on DI vary across the six scales, providing evidence that understanding and acceptance of DI beliefs vary by the original-versus-new distinction and across the three dimensions. Thus, this work provides evidence that DI is not a unified package of ideas but a network of schemas related to each other with varying strength.

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