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Interdependence between sexual debut and church attendance in Italy

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Author Info

  • Marcantonio Caltabiano

    (Università di Messina)

  • Gianpiero Dalla Zuanna

    (University of Padua)

  • Alessandro Rosina

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milano)

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    Abstract

    The influence of religion on an individual’s life-course in general – and on sexual behaviour in particular – has long been recognised by social scientists, although few studies have explored the reciprocal causal interdependence between religiosity and sexual debut, mainly in an overwhelmingly Catholic European context. In this paper, we study the dynamic bi-directional effect between first coital experience and discontinuance of church attendance among a representative sample of Italian students. Both effects work, contrasting the results of other authors regarding the USA, where only the effect of religion on sex has been detected. The present results do not change when the two processes are considered simultaneously and unobserved heterogeneity is taken into account. Some possible explanations are discussed.

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    File URL: http://www.demographic-research.org/volumes/vol14/19/14-19.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany in its journal Demographic Research.

    Volume (Year): 14 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 19 (May)
    Pages: 453-484

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    Handle: RePEc:dem:demres:v:14:y:2006:i:19

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    Web page: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/

    Related research

    Keywords: college students; Italy; religion; sexual debut; unobserved heterogeneity;

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    References

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    1. Lillard, L.A. & Waite, L.J., 1994. "A Joint Model of Marital Childbearing and Marital Disruption," Papers 94-16, RAND - Reprint Series.
    2. Alessandro Rosina & Romina Fraboni, 2004. "Is marriage losing its centrality in Italy?," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 11(6), pages 149-172, September.
    3. Lillard, Lee A., 1993. "Simultaneous equations for hazards : Marriage duration and fertility timing," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1-2), pages 189-217, March.
    4. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
    5. E.K. Berndt & B.H. Hall & R.E. Hall, 1974. "Estimation and Inference in Nonlinear Structural Models," NBER Chapters, in: Annals of Economic and Social Measurement, Volume 3, number 4, pages 103-116 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Francesco C. Billari & Riccardo Borgoni, 2001. "Spatial profiles in the analysis of event histories: an application to first sexual intercourse in Italy," MPIDR Working Papers WP-2001-025, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.
    7. Kevin McQuillan, 2004. "When Does Religion Influence Fertility?," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 30(1), pages 25-56.
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