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Is Latin America starting to retreat from early and universal childbearing?

Author

Listed:
  • Luis Rosero-Bixby

    (Universidad de Costa Rica)

  • Teresa Castro Martín

    (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CISC))

  • Teresa Martín-García

    (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CISC))

Abstract

The 2000 censuses show that the proportion of women below age 30 who are mothers has dropped substantially in most Latin America countries, suggesting that the social imperative of early motherhood, which has long prevailed in the region, is weakening. Surveys conducted in 14 Latin American countries in 2006 also show a strong link between childlessness and higher education across several cohorts. We discuss whether the recent increase in childlessness among young women reflects a shift towards later childbearing, a novel trend in the Latin American context, and also whether it may signal an emerging retreat from universal childbearing in the region.

Suggested Citation

  • Luis Rosero-Bixby & Teresa Castro Martín & Teresa Martín-García, 2009. "Is Latin America starting to retreat from early and universal childbearing?," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 20(9), pages 169-194, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:dem:demres:v:20:y:2009:i:9
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    File URL: http://www.demographic-research.org/volumes/vol20/9/20-9.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. 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.
    2. Adsera, Alicia & Menendez, Alicia, 2009. "Fertility Changes in Latin America in the Context of Economic Uncertainty," IZA Discussion Papers 4019, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Maria Letizia Tanturri & Letizia Mencarini, 2008. "Childless or Childfree? Paths to Voluntary Childlessness in Italy," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 34(1), pages 51-77.
    4. Joseph Potter & Carl Schmertmann & Suzana Cavenaghi, 2002. "Fertility and development: evidence from Brazil," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 39(4), pages 739-761, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ewa Batyra, 2016. "Fertility and the changing pattern of the timing of childbearing in Colombia," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 35(46), pages 1343-1372, November.
    2. Albert Esteve Palós & Luis Ángel López-Ruiz & Jeroen Spijker, 2013. "Disentangling how educational expansion did not increase women's age at union formation in Latin America from 1970 to 2000," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 28(3), pages 63-76, January.
    3. Teresa Martín-García, 2009. "The effect of education on women's propensity to be childless in Spain: Does the field of education matter?," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 114, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
    4. José Ortega, 2014. "A Characterization of World Union Patterns at the National and Regional Level," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 33(2), pages 161-188, April.
    5. Kathryn Yount & Sarah Zureick-Brown & Nafisa Halim & Kayla LaVilla, 2014. "Fertility Decline, Girls’ Well-being, and Gender Gaps in Children’s Well-being in Poor Countries," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 51(2), pages 535-561, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    childlessness; fertility; first birth; Latin America;

    JEL classification:

    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • Z0 - Other Special Topics - - General

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