IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The childbearing family in sub-Saharan Africa : structure, fertility, and the future


  • Frank, Odile


sub-Saharan Africa is lagging behind the rest of the world in what otherwise seems to be a global - encompassing even the giant, China - demographic transition to fertility decline. The author analyzes the present types of family structure and divisions of responsibility and forecasts four scenarios, what she calls the feminist, impoverishment, Americas, and Caldwellian scenarios. She also discusses the importance ofgender roles and fertility regulating behavior in sub-Saharan Africa - particularly the importance in the African family structure of child fostering. Finally, she addresses the methodological difficulties of conducting research on family structure and fertility in Africa, and outlines an agenda for research.

Suggested Citation

  • Frank, Odile, 1990. "The childbearing family in sub-Saharan Africa : structure, fertility, and the future," Policy Research Working Paper Series 509, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:509

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Bailey, Wilma & Wynter, Hugh & Lee, Amy, 1988. "Women in search of stability," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 619-623, January.
    2. Kennedy, Eileen T. & Cogill, Bruce, 1987. "Income and nutritional effects of the commercialization of agriculture in southwestern Kenya:," Research reports 63, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    3. repec:ilo:ilowps:220405 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Oppong C., 1982. "Maternal role rewards, opportunity costs and fertility," ILO Working Papers 992204053402676, International Labour Organization.
    5. Oppong C. & Church K., 1981. "Field guide to research on seven roles of women: focussed biographies," ILO Working Papers 992121373402676, International Labour Organization.
    6. Folbre, Nancy, 1986. "Cleaning house : New perspectives on Households and Economic Development," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 5-40, June.
    7. Lele, Uma, 1986. "Women and Structural Transformation," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 34(2), pages 195-221, January.
    8. repec:ilo:ilowps:212137 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:509. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.