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Power of the Pill or Power of Abortion? Re-Examining the Effects of Young Women's Access to Reproductive Control

  • Myers, Caitlin Knowles

    ()

    (Middlebury College)

Recent research postulating that the diffusion of confidential access to the birth control pill to young women in the United States contributed to the dramatic social changes of the late 1960s and 1970s has not adequately accounted for the largely contemporaneous diffusion of access to abortion. Estimates using a new panel of data on state policies related to access to the pill and abortion indicate that while access to the pill may have played a role in the sexual revolution, it had little effect on the probabilities of entering into marriage and parenthood at a young age. In contrast, both the legalization of abortion and the enactment of laws permitting young unmarried women to consent to it led to substantial delays in marriage and motherhood.

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File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp6661.pdf
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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6661.

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Length: 77 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6661
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  1. Martha J. Bailey, 2009. ""Momma's Got the Pill": How Anthony Comstock and Griswold v. Connecticut Shaped U.S. Childbearing," NBER Working Papers 14675, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Elizabeth Oltmans Ananat & Daniel M. Hungerman, 2012. "The Power of the Pill for the Next Generation: Oral Contraception's Effects on Fertility, Abortion, and Maternal and Child Characteristics," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 37-51, February.
  3. Melanie Guldi, 2008. "Fertility effects of abortion and birth control pill access for minors," Demography, Springer, vol. 45(4), pages 817-827, November.
  4. Gary S. Becker, 1981. "A Treatise on the Family," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number beck81-1, May.
  5. Levine, Phillip B., 2003. "Parental involvement laws and fertility behavior," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(5), pages 861-878, September.
  6. Andrew Zuppann, 2012. "The Pill and Marital Stability," Working Papers 201310812, Department of Economics, University of Houston.
  7. Heinrich Hock, 2007. "The Pill and the College Attainment of American Women and Men," Working Papers wp2007_10_01, Department of Economics, Florida State University.
  8. Edlund, Lena & Machado, Cecilia, 2011. "Pill Power: The Prequel," IZA Discussion Papers 5468, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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