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Interdependence between sexual debut and church attendance in Italy

  • Marcantonio Caltabiano

    (Università di Messina)

  • Gianpiero Dalla Zuanna

    (University of Padua)

  • Alessandro Rosina

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milano)

Registered author(s):

    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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    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
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/

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    1. Ernst R. Berndt & Bronwyn H. Hall & Robert E. Hall & Jerry A. Hausman, 1974. "Estimation and Inference in Nonlinear Structural Models," NBER Chapters, in: Annals of Economic and Social Measurement, Volume 3, number 4, pages 653-665 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Kevin McQuillan, 2004. "When Does Religion Influence Fertility?," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 30(1), pages 25-56.
    3. 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.
    4. Lee Lillard & Linda Waite, 1993. "A joint model of marital childbearing and marital disruption," Demography, Springer, vol. 30(4), pages 653-681, November.
    5. 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.
    6. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
    7. 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.
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