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Overview Chapter 5: Determinants of family formation and childbearing during the societal transition in Central and Eastern Europe

  • Tomas Frejka

    (Independent researcher)

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    Societal conditions for early and high rates of childbearing were replaced by conditions generating late and low levels of fertility common in Western countries. Central among factors shaping the latter behaviour (job insecurity, unstable partnership relationships, expensive housing, and profound changes in norms, values and attitudes) were the following: increasing proportions of young people were acquiring advanced education, a majority of women were gainfully employed, yet women were performing most household maintenance and childrearing duties. Two theories prevailed to explain what caused changes in family formation and fertility trends. One argues that the economic and social crises were the principal causes. The other considered the diffusion of western norms, values and attitudes as the prime factors of change. Neither reveals the root cause: the replacement of state socialist regimes with economic and political institutions of contemporary capitalism. The extraordinarily low period TFRs around 2000 were the result of low fertility of older women born around 1960 overlapping with low fertility of young women born during the 1970s.

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    File URL: http://www.demographic-research.org/volumes/vol19/7/19-7.pdf
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    Article provided by Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany in its journal Demographic Research.

    Volume (Year): 19 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 7 (July)
    Pages: 139-170

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    Handle: RePEc:dem:demres:v:19:y:2008:i:7
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.demogr.mpg.de/

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    1. Alessandra De Rose & Filomena Racioppi & Anna Laura Zanatta, 2008. "Italy: Delayed adaptation of social institutions to changes in family behaviour," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(19), pages 665-704, July.
    2. Tomas Sobotka & Anna Å t’astná & Krystof Zeman & Dana Hamplová & Vladimíra Kantorová, 2008. "Czech Republic: A rapid transformation of fertility and family behaviour after the collapse of state socialism," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(14), pages 403-454, July.
    3. Irena E. Kotowska & Janina Jóźwiak & Anna Matysiak & Anna Baranowska-Rataj, 2008. "Poland: Fertility decline as a response to profound societal and labour market changes?," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(22), pages 795-854, July.
    4. Livia Sz. Oláh & Eva Bernhardt, 2008. "Sweden: Combining childbearing and gender equality," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(28), pages 1105-1144, July.
    5. Elena Koytcheva & Dimiter Philipov, 2008. "Bulgaria: Ethnic differentials in rapidly declining fertility," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(13), pages 361-402, July.
    6. Nada Stropnik & Milivoja Å ircelj, 2008. "Slovenia: Generous family policy without evidence of any fertility impact," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(26), pages 1019-1058, July.
    7. Hans-Peter Kohler & Francesco C. Billari & José Antonio Ortega, 2002. "The Emergence of Lowest-Low Fertility in Europe During the 1990s," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 28(4), pages 641-680.
    8. Margarita Delgado & Gerardo Meil & Francisco Zamora-López, 2008. "Spain: Short on children and short on family policies," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(27), pages 1059-1104, July.
    9. Cornelia Muresan & Paul-Teodor HărăguÅŸ & Mihaela HărăguÅŸ & Christin Schröder, 2008. "Romania: Childbearing metamorphosis within a changing context," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 19(23), pages 855-906, July.
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