Fertility as a process of social exchange
AbstractBy marrying and raising children, parents participate in a system of gift-exchange in which the gifts in question are human lives, and the parties to the exchange are the kinship groups recognised in the society concerned. Fertility reflects the attitudes of prospective parents to their place in the existing system of reproductive exchange, and the relationships of cooperation and authority which it implies - as well as their confidence in the systemâ€™s continuing viability. It is shown that this view is compatible with earlier ideas about self-regulating population systems - and that changing economic circumstances are an important source of discrepancy between existing exchange systems and the attitudes and expectations of prospective parents. The discussion is developed with reference to data on European societies, including a case-study from the Alps, and concludes with an assessment of the relevance of the anthropological theory of gift exchange to contemporary fertility patterns in Europe and beyond.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany in its journal Demographic Research.
Volume (Year): 17 (2007)
Issue (Month): 16 (December)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/
anthropological demography; cooperation; exchange marriage; fertility; homeostatic population regulation; reciprocity; second demographic transition;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
- Z0 - Other Special Topics - - General
You can help add them by filling out this form.
reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Editorial Office).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.