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The Fertility Revolution

Author

Listed:
  • Easterlin, Richard A.
  • Crimmins, Eileen M.

Abstract

For most of human history a "natural fertility" regime has prevailed throughout the world: there has been almost no conscious limitation of family size within marriage, and women have spent their reproductive lives tied to the "wheel of childbearing." Only recently in developed countries has fertility been brought under conscious control by individual couples and childbearing fallen to an average of two births per woman. The explanation of this "fertility revolution" is the main concern of this book. Richard A. Easterlin and Eileen M. Crimmins present and test a fertility theory that has gained increasing attention over the last decade, a "supply-demand theory" that integrates economic and sociological approaches to fertility determination. The results of the tests, which draw on data from four developing countries—Colombia, India, Sri Lanka, and Taiwan—are highly consistent, though a number of the conclusions are likely to arouse controversy. For example, couples' motivation for fertility control appears to be the prime mover in the fertility revolution, rather than access to family planning services or unfavorable attitudes toward such services. The interdisciplinary approach and nontechnical exposition of this study will attract a wide readership among economists, sociologists, demographers, anthropologists, statisticians, biologists, and others.

Suggested Citation

  • Easterlin, Richard A. & Crimmins, Eileen M., 1985. "The Fertility Revolution," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 0, number 9780226180298, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:bkecon:9780226180298
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Nan L. Maxwell, 1987. "Influences On The Timing Of First Childbearing," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 5(2), pages 113-122, April.
    2. Arnstein Aassve & Abbi M. Kedir & Habtu Tadesse Woldegebriel, 2006. "State Dependence and Causal Feedback of Poverty and Fertility in Ethiopia," Discussion Papers in Economics 06/7, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
    3. Alok Bhargava & Sadia Chowdhury & K. K. Singh, 2006. "Healthcare infrastructure, contraceptive use and infant mortality in Uttar Pradesh, India," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Econometrics, Statistics And Computational Approaches In Food And Health Sciences, chapter 23, pages 319-335 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    4. Birner, Regina & Davis, Kristin & Pender, John & Nkonya, Ephraim & Anandajayasekeram, Ponniah & Ekboir, Javier & Mbabu, Adiel & Spielman, David & Horna, Daniela & Benin, Samuel & Cohen, Marc J., 2006. "From "best practice" to "best fit": a framework for designing and analyzing pluralistic agricultural advisory services worldwide," DSGD discussion papers 37, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    5. Julia Behrman, 2015. "Does Schooling Affect Women’s Desired Fertility? Evidence From Malawi, Uganda, and Ethiopia," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 52(3), pages 787-809, June.
    6. Aassve, Arnstein & Arpino, Bruno, 2008. "Estimation of causal effects of fertility on economic wellbeing: evidence from rural Vietnam," ISER Working Paper Series 2007-27, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    7. Witcover, Julie & Vosti, Stephen A. & Lipton, Michael, 2006. "Agricultural Change and Population Growth: District-Level Evidence From India," 2006 Annual Meeting, August 12-18, 2006, Queensland, Australia 25443, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Arnstein Aassve & Henriette Engelhardt & Francesca Francavilla & Abbi Kedir & Jungho Kim & Fabrizia Mealli & Letizia Mencarini & Stephen Pudney & Alexia Prskawetz, 2005. "Poverty and Fertility in Less Developed Countries: A Comparative Analysis," Discussion Papers in Economics 05/28, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
    9. repec:pit:wpaper:288 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Lawrence Kazembe, 2009. "Modelling individual fertility levels in Malawian women: a spatial semiparametric regression model," Statistical Methods & Applications, Springer;Società Italiana di Statistica, vol. 18(2), pages 237-255, July.
    11. Vosti, Stephen A. & Witcover, Julie & Lipton, Michael, 1994. "The impact of technical change in agriculture on human fertility: district-level evidence from India," EPTD discussion papers 5, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    12. Bruno Arpino & Arnstein Aassve, 2013. "Estimating the causal effect of fertility on economic wellbeing: data requirements, identifying assumptions and estimation methods," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 44(1), pages 355-385, February.
    13. Abbi, M. Kedir & Aassve, Arnstein & Habtu, Tadesse Woldegebriel, 2005. "Simultaneous Random effect models of poverty and Childbearing in Ethiopia," Ethiopian Journal of Economics, Ethiopian Economics Association, vol. 14(2).

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