Article
To read the full-text of this research, you can request a copy directly from the authors.

Abstract

Tropical Africa is known to be lagging far behind the rest of the world in its fertility transition. Many attempts have been made to specify the factors responsible for its resistance to fertility decline; however, no systemic explanation of the mechanisms sustaining its high fertility has been presented in cross-cultural perspective. In this article, we show how a set of anthropological factors provides both social and economic foundations for the preservation of high fertility in tropical Africa. Cross-cultural tests imply that the most important obstacles to tropical Africa’s fertility transition are (a) a high ideal family size, (b) a large potential to absorb increases in the female labor force participation rate without any substantial decreases in fertility due to ample child care readily available through extended family structures, (c) a large potential to increase fertility at the early stages of economic development through the abolition of postpartum sex taboos, and (d) a low potential for increases in birth spacing to contribute to fertility decline. In the last section, we discuss how the results obtained could be useful for policy recommendations aimed at accelerating the fertility decline in tropical Africa, and mitigating the forecasts of explosive population growth.

No full-text available

Request Full-text Paper PDF

To read the full-text of this research,
you can request a copy directly from the authors.

... Neighboring countries can be similar culturally, economically or politically, and also distant countries can have political and economic ties [48] and similarities in health status and social norms (e.g. [49]). Some countries may therefore form clusters of similar units, differing markedly from other clusters. ...
... For example, large desired family size characterizes Sub-Saharan Africa. Korotayev et al. [49] related this norm to polygyny, high status of polygynous men, extended families, and child fosterage within kinships. The latter two aspects enable females to carry out traditional hoe agriculture without reducing the number of children, contributing to high TFR. ...
... The latter two aspects enable females to carry out traditional hoe agriculture without reducing the number of children, contributing to high TFR. And in modern urban Africa, abolition of postpartum sex taboos reduces birth intervals and may contribute to high TFR when large desired family size persists [49,90,91]. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The world population is expected to increase greatly this century, aggravating current problems related to climate, health, food security, biodiversity, energy and other vital resources. Population growth depends strongly on total fertility rate (TFR), but the relative importance of factors that influence fertility needs more study. Methods: We analyze recent levels of fertility in relation to five factors: education (mean school years for females), economy (Gross Domestic Product, GDP, per capita), religiosity, contraceptive prevalence rate (CPR), and strength of family planning programs. We compare six global regions: E Europe, W Europe and related countries, Latin America and the Caribbean, the Arab States, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Asia. In total, 141 countries are included in the analysis. We estimate the strength of relationships between TFR and the five factors by correlation or regression and present the results graphically. Results: In decreasing order of strength, fertility (TFR) correlates negatively with education, CPR, and GDP per capita, and positively with religiosity. Europe deviates from other regions in several ways, e.g. TFR increases with education and decreases with religiosity in W Europe. TFR decreases with increasing strength of family planning programs in three regions, but only weakly so in a fourth, Sub-Saharan Africa (the two European regions lacked such programs). Most factors correlated with TFR are also correlated with each other. In particular, education correlates positively with GDP per capita but negatively with religiosity, which is also negatively related to contraception and GDP per capita. Conclusions: These results help identify factors of likely importance for TFR in global regions and countries. More work is needed to establish causality and relative importance of the factors. Our novel quantitative analysis of TFR suggests that religiosity may counteract the ongoing decline of fertility in some regions and countries.
... Furthermore, rigorous studies of the potential impact of subsidized daycare on WEE in Africa are lacking (Brown et al. 2014;Leroy et al. 2012). Many policy-makers and scholars consequently remain skeptical that limited access to affordable childcare poses a significant barrier to employment for African mothers (Korotayev et al. 2016). ...
... This skepticism is typically based on two main assumptions. First, some researchers contend that affordable ECC is less important in this region given women's high level of participation in agricultural or informal work, which presumably can be easily combined with childcare (Korotayev et al. 2016;Quisumbing et al. 2007). Thus, most working African mothers have little need for center-based childcare. ...
... Second, others point to the widespread availability of female kin, including grandmothers, aunts, and older sisters, who can presumably provide free childcare when the mother is working (Korotayev et al. 2016;Lokshin et al. 2000;Martinez et al. 2012). In fact, earlier demographic and anthropological research explicitly argued that unlike their Asian counterparts, African women experienced no conflict between participation in paid labor outside the household and childcare because of easy access to free childcare from their extended female kin (Ware 1977). ...
Article
Despite evidence from other regions, researchers and policy-makers remain skeptical that women’s disproportionate childcare responsibilities act as a significant barrier to women’s economic empowerment in Africa. This randomized control trial study in an informal settlement in Nairobi, Kenya, demonstrates that limited access to affordable early childcare inhibits poor urban women’s participation in paid work. Women who were offered vouchers for subsidized early childcare were, on average, 8.5 percentage points more likely to be employed than those who were not given vouchers. Most of these employment gains were realized by married mothers. Single mothers, in contrast, benefited by significantly reducing the time spent working without any loss to their earnings by shifting to jobs with more regular hours. The effects on other measures of women’s economic empowerment were mixed. With the exception of children’s health care, access to subsidized daycare did not increase women’s participation in other important household decisions. In addition, contrary to concerns that reducing the costs of childcare may elevate women’s desire for more children, we find no effect on women’s fertility intentions. These findings demonstrate that the impact of subsidized childcare differs by marital status and across outcomes. Nonetheless, in poor urban Africa, as elsewhere, failure to address women’s childcare needs undermines efforts to promote women’s economic empowerment.
... This found socio-cultural explanations in the practice of polygyny in most regions in the country, and having a large family which is culturally symbolic as a proof of social standing [1]. There is also widespread child fosterage by extended families and provision of affordable childcare including community kindergartens [2,3]. The demand of work force for subsistence agriculture is yet another factor associated with high fertility in Nigeria [1,3,4]. ...
... Though we considered proximate fertility determinants such as postpartum infecundability and marital status for determining the study sample inclusion criteria, we further controlled for age at first cohabitation and the number and type of conjugal unions [19]. Since the desire for large family size is widely prevalent across Africa including Nigeria [2,4], we controlled for women's and their partner's fertility preferences. In addition, we adjusted for the duration of inter-birth intervals (IBIs) as proxy factor for potential biological effects. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background Fertility rates remain persistently high in Nigeria, with little difference across socioeconomic groups. While the desire for large family size is culturally rooted, there is little understanding of how repeated child mortality experiences influence fertility behaviour and parity transition in Nigeria. Methods Using birth history data from the 2013 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS), we applied life table techniques and proportional-hazard regression model to explore the effect of child survival experience on parity transitions. We hypothesize that a woman with one or more child death experience is at elevated risk of progressing towards higher parities. Results Our findings show that child mortality is concentrated among mothers living in deprived conditions especially in rural areas of the northern part of Nigeria and among those with little or no education and, among those belonging to Hausa/Fulani ethnicity and Islam religion. Mothers with repeated experience of child deaths were significantly at a higher rate of progressing to higher parities than their counterparts (HR: 1.45; 95% CI: 1.31–1.61), when adjusted for relevant biological and socio-demographic characteristics. Conclusion Recurrent experience of child deaths exacerbates the risks to higher parity transition. Interventions aimed at reducing fertility in Nigeria should target promoting child survival and family planning concurrently.
... Напротив, к группе с низким уровнем глобальной связности принадлежат многие страны (в основном речь идет о государствах Тропической Африки), вступившие в демографический переход с большим запозданием и сохраняющие высокие уровни рождаемости (в ряде государств -более 5 детей на женщину) [см. : Zinkina, Korotayev 2014;Korotayev, Zinkina 2015;Korotayev et al. 2016]. В этих странах чрезвычайно большую долю населения составляют дети и молодежь, а это означает накопление колоссальной демографической инерции; даже если рождаемость в этих странах снизится до уровня простого воспроизводства в ближайшие 10-15 лет (что крайне маловероятно), удвоение абсолютной численности населения в таких странах все равно окажется практически неизбежным [Zinkina, Korotayev 2014]. ...
... Вот почему уже в процессе или в результате выхода из мальтузианской ловушки у социума резко повышается опасность попадания в ловушки нового типа -модернизационные. Ряду стран Тропической Африки еще вполне реально угрожает мальтузианская ловушка, особенно в связи с тем, что демографические прогнозы на XXI в. для них обещают многократный рост населения (см., например: Коротаев, Зинькина 2012;2013;Зинькина, Коротаев 2017;Korotayev, Zinkina 2014;2015;Korotayev et al. 2016;Zinkina, Korotayev 2014a;2014b). Модернизационные ловушки еще более распространены в современном мире, поэтому их анализ релевантен для прогнозирования рисков политической нестабильности в развивающихся странах. ...
... access to contraception and acceptance of smaller family norms in patriarchal societies [3,4]. These projections also assume relatively low levels of international migration; historically, migration levels have proved even harder to predict than changes in fertility. ...
Article
As the nations of the world grapple with the task of creating sustainable societies, ending and in some cases reversing population growth will be necessary to succeed. Yet stable or declining populations are typically reported in the media as a problem, or even a crisis, due to demographic aging. This is misguided, as economic analyses show that the costs connected with aging societies are manageable, while the economic, social, and environmental benefits of smaller populations are substantial. Earth's human-carrying capacity has been exceeded; hence, population growth must end and aging societies are unavoidable. They should be embraced as part of a just and prosperous future for people and the other species with whom we share our planet.
... This means that their fertility rates are close to simple reproduction level or even below it, so not much natural increase is expected in these countries -indeed, for most of them certain population decline is projected by the United Nations' (2017a) medium population scenario for the period until 2050 and even more so in 2050-2100. On the other hand, the low-connected group largely consists of countries which got delayed in their demographic transitions and still possess persistently high fertility rates; this is particularly the case for almost all tropical African countries (see Korotayev, 2014a, 2014b;Zinkina, 2014, 2015;Korotayev et al., 2016b), many of which belong to this specific group. These countries possess very large cohorts of youths and children, thus having accumulated a colossal demographic inertia -indeed, even if demographic transition there accelerates immediately, population doubling in the next decades is pretty much unavoidable in these countries (Zinkina and Korotayev, 2014a;Korotayev and Zinkina, 2014). ...
... This means that their fertility rates are close to simple reproduction level or even below it, so not much natural increase is expected in these countries -indeed, for most of them certain population decline is projected by the United Nations' (2017a) medium population scenario for the period until 2050 and even more so in 2050-2100. On the other hand, the low-connected group largely consists of countries which got delayed in their demographic transitions and still possess persistently high fertility rates; this is particularly the case for almost all tropical African countries (see Korotayev, 2014a, 2014b;Zinkina, 2014, 2015;Korotayev et al., 2016b), many of which belong to this specific group. These countries possess very large cohorts of youths and children, thus having accumulated a colossal demographic inertia -indeed, even if demographic transition there accelerates immediately, population doubling in the next decades is pretty much unavoidable in these countries (Zinkina and Korotayev, 2014a;Korotayev and Zinkina, 2014). ...
Article
Full-text available
For the first-world citizens, globalisation seems to be an all-pervasive phenomenon. Our research reveals that global connectivity rates differ dramatically for various countries and correspondingly, their populations. What will this picture look like in, say, 50 years? We combine demographic projections with our knowledge on the recent dynamics of national rates of global connectivity to estimate the proportion of world population which is expected to live in countries with varying rates of global connectivity. We show that the distribution of world population among the states with various rates of global connectivity is bound to experience significant changes in the coming decades, which should be taken into account at various attempts of providing global foresight.
... But based on observations made in sub-Saharan Africa, where the DT process has taken place without the expected degree of economic development, it has been suggested that the underlying causes of fertility decline go beyond the state of a country's economy and wealth (Caldwell 1986;Caldwell and Caldwell 1987;Caldwell et al. 1992;Bongaarts 2008;Shapiro and Gebreselassie 2008;Ezeh et al. 2009;Bongaarts and Casterline 2012). The most commonly cited factors other than those directly related to economics are the education of women (e.g., Axinn and Barber 2001;Murtin 2012;Cuaresma et al. 2014) and its influence on (societal) values and roles Korotayev et al. 2016), urbanisation (Haggett 2001;Boquier et al. 2011;Dyson 2011), and shifts in migration regimes (Rees et al. 2016). Most recently, Wilson and Dyson (2017) proposed going beyond these rather conventional explanations to study the influence of a more comprehensive set of societal changes, including democratisation processes. ...
Article
The theory of the “(first) demographic transition” (DT) still has considerable practical relevance in the field of population research. For instance, the DT serves as a conceptual model that underlies the UN’s population projections, and is central to the discussion around the so-called “demographic dividend”. Although it was first described 90 years ago, several questions related to the DT remain open or need verification. In particular, there is debate about the question of what the indispensable triggers of the DT are. Assumptions regarding the primary causes include increased education for women and related changes in values, as well as economic development, urbanisation, migration, and the democratisation process. This paper aims to contribute to DT-related research using an innovative research approach. Our study covers all 102 countries with populations that have undergone the DT between 1950 and 2010. Among these countries, we identified 25 populations that passed through this process at an exceptionally high tempo. We refer to this process as “express transitioning” (ET), and seek to identify its main determinants by comparing the ET populations with the populations of the other DT countries. The data we use are taken from the Wittgenstein Centre Data Explorer, the UN World Population Prospects, the UN World Urbanization Prospects, the World Bank Group, and the Center for Systematic Peace. Our analysis is based on rather descriptive methods, including ANOVA tests and bivariate correlations. We find that the urbanisation level and the education dynamics are most closely associated with ET, whereas other variables show no significant association with the ET process.
... Дело в том, что продолжение снижения рождаемости, тем более ускоренными темпами, отнюдь не гарантировано для стран Тропической Африки в ближайшем будущем. Переход рождаемости от традиционного к современному типу воспроизводства происходит в этом регионе значительно медленнее, чем происходило в других регионах развивающегося мира (см., например: [Zinkina, Korotayev, 2014(1); Korotayev et al., 2016]). Более того, многие страны региона в совсем недавнем прошлом (а некоторые и до сих пор) испытали довольно длительный период отсутствия снижения рождаемости, когда она была еще намного выше, чем необходимо для простого воспроизводства населения. ...
Article
Full-text available
An acceleration of economic growth in Tropical Africa is currently expected due to the demographic bonus. These expectations are based on the assumptions of an accelerating decline in fertility in the countries of Tropical Africa. At the same time, it should be noted that a significant number of countries in the region have faced rather long periods of no decline in fertility, or even some fertility increase. Accordingly, the scenario of an accelerated fertility decline is by no means guaranteed. Moreover, in order to receive a demographic bonus, a specific employment policy (aimed at full-time employment) is required, as well as policies related to wages and social issues. However, the implementation of these measures should not be taken for granted; it is possible that they will not be implemented. This raises the question of the difference between development scenarios taking place with or without such measures. We model these two scenarios and compare them, revealing a significant impact of the demographic bonus on GDP per capita, which should be expected in various African countries under the scenario of an accelerated decline in fertility. For Nigeria and Niger, the differences in growth rates are most pronounced, and the demographic bonus is the largest. An accelerated decline in fertility could boost economic growth in Nigeria by 2.5 times, or 2.7 percentage points. However, this scenario is definitely not guaranteed. Our analysis provides several reasons to seriously doubt the prospects for an “automatic” fertility transition in Tropical Africa in the next few decades.
... For example, drawing on data from Northern England Baines and Gelder (2003) describe a sub-set of self-employed mothers whose main base of work being their home and their job flexibility allows them to schedule the demands of their work around their children. In LMICs, women are often engaged in informal entrepreneurial activities or agricultural work which do not necessarily imply separation from infants (Cassirer & Addati, 2007;Korotayev et al., 2016). For example, in the Nairobi slums, Kenya, Clark et al. (2018) identify three main care-providers for children as mothers, relatives and others and day care centres or creches. ...
Article
Full-text available
This paper uses Young Lives Survey data to examine the relationship between early maternal work and child vocabulary development at age 5 in Ethiopia. In bivariate analysis, early maternal work in agriculture, self-employment and single or multiple work activities are negatively associated with vocabulary development at age 5. However, when children are matched on child, maternal and economic context characteristics using entropy balancing only maternal work in multiple activities remains significantly associated. Analysis of the association between the matching variables and maternal work characteristics indicates that children whose mothers did not work in their child's first year of life belong to wealthier households, their mothers have higher levels of education and they are more likely to reside in urban areas – factors which are all also strongly associated with better vocabulary development. Our results suggest that in the case of most maternal work types, it is the factors which select mothers into work, rather than maternal work itself, which are negatively associated with vocabulary development. Particular attention needs to be paid to mothers who juggle multiple work activities alongside caring for young infants, and more broadly policy should focus on enabling low-income women to access high quality and equal education and employment opportunities.
... Women who experience household hunger have roughly 19% decreased odds of wanting more children compared to women who do not experience household hunger. This association remains even after adjusting for number of living children per woman, which is significant given the cultural value of large family size across much of sub-Saharan Africa (Bongaarts and Casterline 2013;Caldwell and Caldwell 1985;Korotayev et al. 2016;Mosha 2017). When operationalizing food insecurity through having at least one child ≤ 5 years old who is stunted, the association between food insecurity and fertility preferences is similar in magnitude and direction, but is significant only at the α = 0.1 level (p = 0.06). ...
Article
Full-text available
Objective We analyze fertility preferences among women at risk of pregnancy with children ages five or younger as a function of two food security metrics: perceptions of household hunger and child stunting (height for age z scores ≤ −2.0) in order to convey a robust picture of food insecurity. Methods We use data from the 2016 Tanzania Demographic and Health Surveys to analyze this research question. Multinomial generalized logit models with cluster-adjusted standard errors are used to determine the association between different dimensions of food insecurity and individual-level fertility preferences. Results On average, women who experience household hunger are 19% less likely to want more children compared to women who do not experience household hunger (AOR: 0.81, p = 0.02) when controlling for education, residence, maternal age, number of living children, and survey month. Adjusting for the same covariates, having at least one child ≤ 5 years old who is stunted is associated with 13% reduced odds of wanting more children compared to having no children stunted (AOR: 0.87, p = 0.06). Conclusions for Practice In the context of a divided literature base, this research aligns with the previous work identifying a preference among women to delay or avoid pregnancy during times of food insecurity. The similarity in magnitude and direction of the association between food insecurity and fertility preferences across the two measures of food insecurity suggest a potential association between lived or perceived resource insecurity and fertility aspirations. Further research is needed in order to establish a mechanism through which food insecurity affects fertility preferences. Significance Statement Individual fertility preferences are sensitive to dynamic multi-level factors in a woman’s life. While qualitative research has explored the effect that food insecurity and associated resource constraints have on fertility preferences, results are conflicting. Here, we quantitatively examine how individual woman’s fertility preferences associate with two measures of food insecurity and qualitatively compare the associations across food insecurity measures. We establish that two food insecurity measures- household hunger and child stunting- capture similar populations and have similar associations with fertility preferences. This is a critical step forward in understanding the dynamic relationship between resource availability, child well-being, and fertility preferences.
... During the final pre-collapse phases overpopulation leads to further decrease of per capita production, surplus production further decreases, and state revenues shrink, whereas the state needs more and more resources to control the growing, though at lower and lower rates, population. Eventually this leads to state breakdown and demographic collapse, after which a new demographic cycle begins-until the escape from the Malthusian Trap that was started by the advanced economies in Europe and North America in the early 19 th century, and that was followed by the overwhelming majority of the social systems afterwards-with a partial exception of Tropical Africa (see, e.g., Kögel, Prskawetz 2001;Zinkina, Korotayev 2014a;Korotayev, Zinkina 2015;Grinin, Korotayev 2015;Korotayev et al. 2016). What kind of territorial expansion/contraction pattern could be generated by such demographic-fiscal dynamics? ...
Article
In the current paper, we investigate the relationship between secular cycles and millennial trends. The tests we perform suggest that the structure of millennial trends cannot be adequately understood without secular cycles being taken into consideration. At a certain level of analysis millennial trends turn out to be a virtual byproduct of demographic cycles that appear to incorporate certain trendcreating mechanisms. This suggests that demographic-political cycle models can serve as a basis for the development and testing of models accounting not only for secular cycles but also for millennial trends.
Article
Full-text available
Recent mass migration flows are not caused solely by the upheaval in the Middle East and the broader Northern Africa-Western Asia region in the aftermath of the Arab Spring or by ongoing conflicts in sub-Saharan Africa, but also and mainly by structural factors that would function in any case, irrelevant of the periodic military and political turbulences. These factors can be properly characterized as macro-historical, as their function and consequences unfold over large, inter-generational periods of time with middle-term and especially long-term repercussions.Instability in the broader region is attributed to structural demographic factors, such as a Malthusian situation comprising overpopulation, limited carrying capacity and youth bulge among the populations and the states of Europe's demographic hinterland.
Article
Full-text available
African culture is implicated in the population dynamics of sub-Saharan Africa which is distinctly pro-fertile. However, there is a dearth of emic African demographic perspectives. In this light, the present article is a representation of demographic motivations of Yorùbá farmers’ who are largely rural residents and “more traditional” in orientation. Their articulations underscore themes cum bases of challenging the African value of high fertility, including the burdensome conceptualisation of high fertility; an appreciation of negative effects of high fertility on individuals and society; and the construction of high fertility as a threat to reaping “child food” (oúnje ọmọ), among others. In the current social climate, traditional culture is altered, manipulated or reconstructed to suit changing realities, thereby vindicating the “culture by the people” as opposed to “culture for the people” approach to cultural understanding.
Article
Purpose. In Sub-Saharan Africa, UN demographers expect the population to nearly double over the next 30 years (2020–2050), increasing by more than 1 billion people. Demographic changes of such speed and scale will undoubtedly have global implications. The purpose of the work is to calculate a number of scenarios of the demographic future for some countries of the region, taking into account specific features and events of African recent demographic history (in contrast to the UN forecasts). We also aim to assess the difference between various scenarios for each country and the attainability of the “optimistic” scenario. Materials and methods. We develop scenario forecasts for population dynamics in a number of African countries. In all scenarios, mortality dynamics corresponds to the “medium” UN forecast. For the birth rate dynamics, two scenarios were simulated: the optimistic one (birth rate goes from current rates to 2.1 children per woman in 20 years, which was observed in Iran; Rwanda and Ethiopia are more or less close to this scenario) and the inertial one (for countries where birth rate declined in 2005–2015, this decline was simulated to continue at the same rate; for countries where birth rate “froze”, two options were modeled; both projected birth rate decline at 0.1 child per woman annually, either starting immediately or after another 10 years). The results show that all scenarios, even the “optimistic” one, forecast a huge population increase in all countries considered (Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia) over the next 30 years. Slow birth rate decline (or prolonged “stagnation” at high levels) parallel to successful mortality reduction (especially in infants and children) accumulated enormous demographic inertia in many countries of Sub-Saharan Africa (to calculate its scope, an additional “provisional” scenario was calculated in the work). The difference between the “inertial” and the “optimistic” reaches the size or even sometimes exceeds the current population of the country. This underlines the importance of the governments’ efforts to curb population growth. Ethiopia proves such efforts. Conclusion. Only in Ethiopia the “inertial” and “optimistic” scenarios almost coincide thanks to demographic growth-reducing efforts undertaken there since the early 1990s; thus, in 2005–2015 the birth rate decreased by 1.3 children per woman. This proves that achieving an “optimistic” scenario is possible in African countries, although with considerable and concentrated efforts.
Article
Full-text available
Although poor use of contraceptives and high desire for children is characteristic of sub-Saharan Africa, this demographic challenge is more peculiar to more disadvantaged segments of the population like rural farmers. This study was designed to examine current use of modern family planning and fertility intention among women farmers of reproductive age in Ido and Ona-ara Local Government Areas of Ibadan, Nigeria. Using cross-sectional survey design, semi-structured questionnaire were administered via structured-interview to randomly and systematically selected 408 respondents. Chi-square was used to show significance of associations between pairs of variables. Contingency co-efficient was used to examine extent of significant associations. Results indicate that majority of respondents (77%) desired additional children, the mean number of children that respondents already have is 2.94±1.35 while mean fertility intention is 1.85±1.44. The proportion of current users of modern family planning is 45.6%. The use of oral pills (30.6%) is most popular among respondents. There is no significant association between current use of modern family planning and fertility intention among married and divorced respondents, among respondents in all the age sub-groups, and among respondents with no formal education or secondary education ( p > 0.05), but there is among respondents with primary and tertiary education ( p < 0.05). The synergy between the use of modern family planning and fertility intention among women farmers in the study area is notable but requires significant progression. Having primary education and tertiary education is significantly associated respectively with lower and higher use of modern family planning in relation to fertility intention. Education is an important element of fertility dynamics among women farmers in the study area.
Article
Modern contraception has created new possibilities for reimagining reproductive norms and has generated new socio-cultural uncertainties in South Kivu province, Democratic Republic of Congo. Using inductive analysis of women’s reproductive narratives, this paper explores how women in a high fertility context encounter and integrate recently introduced family planning and modern contraceptive education and services into their lives. As foundational socio-cultural norms confront the new reproductive possibilities offered by contraception, power dynamics shift and norms are called into question, re-interpreted and re-negotiated. Reproduction is located as a socially constructed process at the intersection of fertility norms, power dynamics, institutional practices, embodied realties and personal desires. In many ways the possibilities created by contraception – meant to increase certainty in the lives of users – actually increase uncertainty. The complexity of reproductive navigation reveals the shortcomings of reproductive theory and health and development discourses which view women and men as autonomous decision makers, removing them from the multiplicity of influencing factors, histories and power dynamics within which they realise their reproductive lives.
Article
Full-text available
For the first-world citizens, globalization seems to be an all-pervasive phenomenon; however, the global connectivity rates differ dramatically for various countries. What will the situation be in, let say, fifty years? The article aims to show how the future demographic changes can influence absolute numbers and relative proportions of societies with different levels of global connectivity. To estimate the national rates of global connectivity the authors rely on the countries' participation in global networks, such as trade in goods, trade in services, foreign direct investment (FDI), and international migration. As the scenario of the demographic future, the authors use medium population projections of 2017 calculated by the United Nations Population Division. The authors applied a two-stage method: first, they constructed network models and analyzed the structure of networks to reveal the positions of countries in order to estimate their rates of global connectivity and identify six groups of countries according to their global connectivity rates. Second, the authors combined the results of network analysis with demographic projections to find out how many people are expected to live in the countries with different connectivity rates in the nearest decades (let say, up to 2050) and in the more distant future (2100). The results show that nearly a half of the world population (3.46 billion) lives in highly-connected countries but the situation will dramatically change in the coming decades. The proportion of population in the highly- and highly-medium-connected countries will decline by 2050 and further by 2100, while the proportion of residents of medium- and low-connected (and to some extent of lowest-low-connected) countries will significantly grow.
Article
Introduction: Reduced fertility risk is a risk in females treated with a high cumulative cyclophosphamide (CPM) dose. Objectives: The objective of this study is to establish the age at menarche, record all pregnancies, calculate age-specific fertility rate (ASFR) in female BL survivors, treated in Cameroon, in the age groups 15-19 and 20-24 years, and association with an increasing cumulative CPM dose. Methods: Data collection included personal data and telephone interviews for female survivors, aged ≥12 years with regards to menarche age, their mothers' menarche age, incidence and outcome of all pregnancies. The cumulative CPM/m2 dose was categorized as low (<4723 mg/m2), medium (4724-10 635 mg/m/2) or high (>10 635 mg/m2). Results: The median age at first treatment for 113 patients was 8 years (range 3-17 years), with median current age 17 years (range 12-26 years); the median duration of follow-up was 9 years (range 1.2-13.3 years). The median age of patients at menarche (n = 109; 4 unknown) was 14 years (range 10-17 years, SD 1.19) and that of their mothers (n = 68; 45 unknown) 15 years (range 10-17 years, SD 1.53). The median time to first pregnancy following menarche (the fertility time) was 3.04 years (n = 10) with low-dose CPM, 6.09 years with medium-dose CPM (n = 81) and 6.04 years with high-dose CPM (n = 32) (log rank difference p = 0.420). The ASFR in the age group 15-19 years was 82.19 (n = 73) and in the age group 20-24 years was 863.6 (n = 22), with significantly lower ASFR (p > 0.001) in children treated before the age of 10 years. Conclusion: Fertility rates of girls treated for BL with CPM were normal but reduced in patients who commenced treatment before the age of 10 years.
Article
Full-text available
Most societies control fertility and population growth to some degree through basic institutional arrangements that support the functioning of the social system as a whole. This article tries to specify these arrangements, to establish their raison d'etre, and to document the ways in which the nature of the fertility transition is contingent upon changes in the normative code and the system of social control. Drawing on the record for historical Western Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa, it considers first the linkages between appropriation of resources, patterns of social control, risk-sharing devolution, and demographic checks in pretransitional settings and then proceeds to examine these variables in the context of demographic transition.
Article
Full-text available
Although levels of fertility in most sub-Saharan Africa have not shown significant trends in the past few decades, substantial fertility differentials exist between countries and between regions and socioeconomic groups within countries. This paper examines the proximate determinants of fertility that are responsible for these variations in fertility. Particular attention is given to the biological and behavioral factors, such as postpartum abstinence, prolonged breastfeeding, and pathological sterility, which are crucial determinants of fertility in sub-Saharan Africa. Using a simple analytic model, the relative fertility-inhibiting effects of the proximate determinants are quantified, and from this analysis an assessment is made of prospects for future trends in fertility. It is concluded that rapid declines in fertility are unlikely to occur in the near future, partly because desired family size is very high and partly because upward pressure on fertility levels will result from the erosion of traditional childspacing practices of postpartum abstinence and prolonged breastfeeding or from declines in levels of pathological sterility in response to public health measures.
Article
Full-text available
Our article draws attention to a crucial factor frequently omitted from the global development agenda, namely the explosive population growth inevitably expected in Tropical Africa in the nearest decades as a result of the region's laggardness in fertility transition. Population doubling (or even tripling) in the next decades can seriously undermine the development prospects of Tropical African countries and lead to sociopolitical destabilization or even large-scale violent conflicts with possibly global consequences. Bringing down the population growth rates (mainly through substantially reducing the fertility rates) appears to be crucial for the achievement of the 1977 “Goals for Mankind,” as well as the Millennium Development Goals, and, as we proceed to show, can be most effectively achieved through substantially increasing female secondary education, which, in turn, should be achieved by introducing compulsory secondary education and making it the first-rate development priority.
Article
Full-text available
Relationships among plow agriculture, female contributions to crop tending, and polygyny in the Standard Cross-Cultural Sample are examined here. Without controlling for world regions, a log-linear analysis would suggest that each of these variables is related to the other two. Introducing a control for region with a four-way contingency table, we find significant relationships between region and each of the three variables. Furthermore, the control for region eliminates the relationship between plow agriculture and the female contribution to crop tending. Theorists such as Boserup have claimed that women do less agricultural labor with intensive agriculture. This relationship is apparently not a valid one, but simply a consequence of the joint diffusion of the three variables throughout the Old World.
Article
Full-text available
Article
Full-text available
Polygyny is common in the ethnographic record. The vast majority of cultures known to anthropology allowed at least some men to have more than one wife simultaneously. This article compares various explanations of nonsororal polygyny, by far the most common type of polygyny. Multiple regression analyses of data for the societies in the Standard Cross-Cultural Sample indicate that the two main independent cross-cultural predictors of appreciable (i.e., more than occasional) nonsororal polygyny are high male mortality in war (resulting in an excess of females) and high pathogen stress, which seems to favor nonsororal polygyny to maximize genetic variation and disease resistance in progeny. High male mortality in war predicts particularly in nonstate societies. High pathogen stress predicts particularly in more densely populated state societies.
Article
Full-text available
A new set of codes is offered to begin to unpack the dimensions of polygyny. Included are measures of frequency and statistical dis-tributions of multiple wives, cultural rules, residential arrangements and kin relations among co-wives, male stratification, and marriage of captured women. Problems of coding and measurement are extensively illustrated. A series of hypotheses is supported regarding two types of polygyny: wealth-increasing and sororal. In the first, women's labor generates wealth and (if warfare allows) female captives are taken as secondary wives. Here polygyny stratifies males by wealth and most men are able to become polygynists with age. Residential autonomy of wives is an elaboration of this pattern. The second is marked by coresidence of husband and wives and dependence of the family mostly on resources generated by the husband. Here polygyny is usually dependent on the exceptional productivity of particular men such as hunters or shamans. The regional-historical adaptations of these types differ markedly. Neither fits the model of resource-defense polygyny found in other species. Explanations of polygyny, particularly of the first type, require close attention to resource and demographic flows within regional ecologies. The second type requires further functional and historical analysis. Both require more consideration of the way polygyny operates from the female point of view, a task only partially begun here.
Article
Full-text available
We discuss and test competing explanations for polygyny based on household economics, malecentered kin groups, warfare, and environmental characteristics. Data consist of codes for 142 societies from the Standard Cross-Cultural Sample, including new codes for polygyny and environmental characteristics. An explanatory model is tested for the worldwide sample using regression analysis, and then replicated with regional samples. We obtain convergent results with two different measures of polygyny, cultural rules for men's marriages and the percentage of women married polygynously. We conclude that the best predictors of polygyny are fraternal interest groups, warfare for capture of women, absence of constraints on expansion into new lands, and environmental quality and homogeneity.
Article
Full-text available
A model of causes and consequences of sexual division of labor in agriculture is tested using a sample of African societies. Crop type and the presence or absence of slavery are shown to be effective predictors of the degree of female contribution to agricultural subsistence, and the degree of polygyny is shown to be affected by female agricultural contribution and the form of residence. Autocorrelation effects are found and are shown to be a consequence of Bantu societies having higher female participation in agriculture than would otherwise be expected. This effect is an example of one of the kinds of phenomena that anthropologists have referred to as Galton's problem. [sexual division of labor, cultural ecology, Galton's Problem, Africa]
Article
Full-text available
Female agricultural contributions decline with agricultural intensification. We formulate and test a theory of the processes of agricultural intensification that explains a high proportion of the variance in female contributions to agriculture. Five variables show replicable effects across two or more regions of the world. These are number of dry months, importance of domesticated animals to subsistence, use of the plow, crop type, and population density. Of these, the first two are the most powerful predictors of female agricultural contributions, while population density has only very weak effects.
Chapter
This chapter, based on a national household fertility, family and family-planning (FFFP) survey, 1971-5, is an attempt to provide an understanding of household reproductive behaviour in a traditional African society that is currently undergoing rapid social and economic transformation. Nigeria, like most of sub-Saharan Africa (Adegbola, 1977), has high levels of both fertility and mortality. The crude birth rate, one of the highest national fertility rates in the world (Ekanem and Farooq, 1977), is estimated to be slightly in excess of 50 per thousand population. However, a preliminary bivariate analysis of the present data in an earlier paper showed that south-western Nigerian households are not engaged in uncontrolled reproductive behaviour. Parents do have a conception of desired family-size, and do desire and practise fertility limitation (Farooq, Ekanem and Ojelade, 1977). This chapter goes an important step further in that, through an extensive use of multivariate regression analysis, it estimates a model of the socio-economic and cultural determinants of fertility, and attempts to delineate the different fertility concepts relevant to a traditional African society.
Article
This paper suggests that extended family households will come to prevail in a society when there are incompatible activity requirements that cannot be met by a mother or father in a one-family household. We discuss why we think that the extended family household is a more likely solution to the problem of incompatible activity requirements than other logically possible solutions. A cross-cultural test indicates that the hypothesis about incompatible activity requirements strongly predicts extended family households, in both agricultural and non-agricultural societies.
Book
Mary Kingsley (1862–1900) is one of the best known Victorian women travellers, whose solo adventures in West Africa made her a celebrity in England. This, her second book, published in 1899, was an instant best-seller. She travelled extensively, engaging in trade both to fund her trip and to get to know the African people, rather than merely observing as an outsider. Some of her views were considered controversial – she opposed the attempts by missionaries to impose European culture on native people, and defended polygamy and even slavery. She opposed direct colonial rule, and wanted Africans to have more self-determination. Her observations and interests are wide-ranging, and she showed an acute and sympathetic understanding of West African culture and society.
Article
Several theoretical explanations on crosscultural variation in marital structure are reviewed, with primary emphasis on explanations involving economic antecedents. Hypotheses derived from one of these theories are tested on data from the Ethnographic Atlas. The results indicate that the relationship between the economic productivity of females and the occurrence of polygyny is different in different types of economic systems, and that extant theories are too simplistic to explain these differences. Suggestions are made for further theoretical development which involve the integration of several previous theories.
Article
Cross-cultural variation in type of marriage appears to be largely explicable in terms of specified patterns of socioeconomic organization. A study of preferred type of marriage for some 500 societies shows that whether a society is characterized by a cultural value of monogamy or one of polygyny is related to such structural traits as subsistence economy, social stratification, political integration, settlement pattern, and community size; but only indirectly related to such normative traits as religion and sex taboos. In general, monogamy is found to be favored by societies with more complex attributes of socioeconomic structure, while polygynous societies are more prevalent at the intermediate or simple range of a societal complexity scale.
Article
An analysis of 549 cultures included in Murdock's "World Ethnographic Sample" reveals a rough relationship between type of family system and certain economic factors-especially the subsistence pattern and the amount of family property. The independent family system tends to predominate in hunting and gathering societies, the extended family where there is a more ample and secure food supply. The extended family system tends to be associated with social stratification, even when subsistence patterns are held constant, and is functionally adapted to the control of property. Deviant cases reveal that migration, warfare, and heavy seasonal demands on labor may also have an effect upon the family system.
Article
A number of recent surveys show that fertility has begun to decline in Botswana, Zimbabwe, Kenya, and southern Nigeria. This study of an urban area in southwest Nigeria confirms a fertility decline and throws on the erosion of traditional supports for high fertility. The authors conclude that the sub-Saharan fertility transition is likely to differ during its early decades from the pattern established by the European and Asian transitions: the greatest demand for fertility control will come not from older women wishing to cease family building but from young married women who wish to maintain or lengthen traditional birth intervals even though the traditional mechanisms for achieving those ends are decaying. The onset of fertility decline is likely to be determined by the attainment of relatively low levels of infant and child mortality, substantial extension in female secondary education, an ample supply of contraceptives, and government leadership toward controlling family size.
Article
The role of culture in determining demographic behavior in sub-Saharan Africa has attracted increasing attention. But in theorizing about "culture," demographers have tended to draw on the work of British structural-functional anthropologists, who saw behavior as determined by social norms that were in turn generated by underlying social structures, functional in nature. This has led to a number of features: an emphasis on macro-level associations; a working assumption that behavior is governed by norms; the analysis of change solely in terms of external forces; and the use of generalized descriptions of both ideas and behavior in African societies. The author argues for a complementary, micro-level approach that emphasizes the meaning of norms to actors in society. Examples based on existing ethnographic material from Sierra Leone and the Gambia are used to show how different people deploy different normative notions and how discrepancies between norms and behavior are dealt with. This material is then placed within a wider setting to provide an alternative hypothesis relating social structure and changing behavior.
Article
Fertility remains high and stable throughout sub-Saharan Africa, and there is no certain evidence of any national fertility decline. The explanation is not solely lack of development or ineffectiveness of family planning programs; almost 20 years ago some countries were relatively well developed and had introduced national population programs. The explanation lies largely in a religious belief system and an accompanying social structure that have accorded both spiritual and economic rewards to high marital fertility. Because of the weakness of the conjugal link, men do not feel the full economic burden of their reproductive decisions, while women are ultimately so dependent on their children that they have good reason to fear having too few. This essay explores the context of high African fertility as well as signs of destabilization in this high-fertility system on both the individual and national level.
Article
This paper discusses the suitability of data on the fertility of polygamous marriages for drawing inferences on the effect of coital frequency on fertility. The author concludes that it may be possible to utilise these data, provided polygamous husbands distribute their sexual activity among all their wives, so that coital frequency for a polygamous wife is lower than that of a monogamous one. Polygamous Arab Beduin may be supposed to have intercourse regularly with all their wives. The author shows that childlessness is higher among first and second polygamous wives than among monogamous ones, and that the average number of children per fertile woman is lower. The higher incidence of childlessness may be due to response errors, or may demonstrate that childlessness is an incentive to polygamy. But the smaller average number of children per fertile woman shows a real differential. It is also shown that although the number of children born to polygamous women is smaller than that of monogamous women, polygamous husbands have larger families than monogamous ones.
Article
A multiple regression analysis using "dummy" variables is utilized in a study of family organization in 412 societies selected randomly from Murdock's "Ethnographic Atlas." Results indicate that type of family is significantly related to variables of societal organization, that these latter variables can be categorized by rank as to productivity and/or societal complexity, and that the limited family type is more likely to be found in complex societies than is the general family type. The family typology proposed here, which emphasizes the comparative amount of economic responsibility that must be assumed by the family head, appears more useful in dealing with family-societal relationships than the previously used independent-extended family dichotomy.
Article
The “medium” population projection series by the UN Population Division forecasts nearcatastrophic population increase for a whole number of Tropical African countries, especially East African ones. However, the projections for Mozambique, appearing somewhat less ominous than those for the neighboring Zambia, Tanzania, and Malawi, do not account for the recent fertility dynamics in Mozambique. Indeed, the projection implies a rather rapid fertility decline, while in reality it has been not just stalled, but even growing during the latest decade. We present our own population projection for Mozambique based on the UN version, but taking into account the recent fertility dynamics. We also model two more demographic scenarios, the “inertial” one (continuation of the current trends) and the “optimistic” one (acceleration to the Iranian pace of fertility transition). We evaluate the difference in terms of total population and various age cohort numbers between these scenarios, and reveal some of their crucial implications for Mozambican development prospects.
Article
Recent research on African countries suggests their fertility transitions are slowing or reversing. Authors have suggested that this trend change may relate to widespread HIV/AIDS, but speculation abounds as to how HIV/AIDS interacts with fertility in African countries. A virtual morass of behavioral and biological mechanisms can lead to positive or negative correlations between HIV rate and fertility, and these correlations can be opposite on the individual and aggregate levels. This article provides a synopsis of the mechanisms, attempting to describe their relative importance in affecting larger demographic trends. We discuss what outcome measures would be impacted by the different mechanisms, and suggest methods on how to study whether HIV plays a significant role in fertility trends. Case studies of several variables from three countries (Uganda, Burkina Faso, and Zimbabwe) show that fertility declines appear to stall during the height of the epidemics in these countries, and effects are larger depending on extremity of the epidemic. While these results show suggestive evidence of fertility behavior changes in relation to the HIV epidemic, more rigorous empirical analyses are necessary to control for conditional effects.
Article
this high fertility combined with declining mortality has resulted in rapid population growth—2.5 percent per year—and the un projects the sub-Saharan population to grow from 0.86 billion in 2010 to 1.96 billion in 2050 and 3.36 billion in 2100. Such unprecedented expansion of human numbers creates a range of social, economic, and environmental challenges and makes it more difficult for the continent to raise living standards. Hence the growing interest in demographic trends in africa among policymakers. according to conventional demographic theory, high fertility in the early stages of the demographic transition is the consequence of high desired family size. Couples want many children to assist with family enterprises such as farming and for security in old age. in addition, high child mortality leads parents to have additional children to protect against loss or to replace losses. Fertility decline occurs once rising levels of urbanization and education, changes in the economy, and declining mortality lead parents to desire a smaller number of births. to implement these desires, parents rely on contraception or abortion, and family planning programs in many countries accelerate their adoption (notestein 1945;
Article
Factor analysis (principal components) with both orthogonal and ob lique rotations was applied to gamma coefficients derived from the cross-cultural data used to develop a settlement pattern scale of cul tural complexity. Varying numbers of factors were rotated, using both methods, and it was concluded that the results confirmed the systematic relationships reported earlier. However, the missing data were some what of a problem, and the analysis was repeated with estimated missing values for an augmented set of traits, using both phi and gamma coeffi cients and oblique rotation only. Phi gave a clearer picture, with the same major factors-politics, economics, and religion. In addition, a functional relationship between monogamy, bilateral kinship, and absence of slavery appeared. The other variables were essentially restricted to their own specific factors. Higher order factor analysis was then used to group the initial factors at a second and third level. [Cultural Evolution, Cross- cultural Analysis, Factor Analysis, Comparative Methodology]
Article
First theories proposed to explain determinants of postmarital residence connected it with the division of labor by gender. However, at the moment all the cross-cultural tests of this hypothesis using worldwide samples have failed to find any significant relationship between these two variables. Our tests have shown that the female contribution to subsistence does correlate significantly with matrilocal residence in general; however, this correlation is hidden by general polygyny factor. Though the rise of female contribution to subsistence tends to lead to matrilocal residence, it also tends simultaneously to lead to general non-sororal polygyny, which effectively destroys matrilocality. This factor being controlled (e. g. through a multiple regression model) labor division turns out to be a significant predictor of postmarital residence. Thus, this paper shows that Murdock's hypotheses regarding the relationships between the labor division and postmarital residence were basically correct, though the actual relationships between those two groups of variables turn out to be more complicated than he expected.
Article
A theory of the status of women is presented which draws primarily on ecological and economic factors and posits a relationship between female production and female status. It was hypothesized that female contribution to subsistence activities would be a function of certain ecological factors and/or a prolonged drain of male labor. It was found that these factors were related to female production activities. A scale of female status was then derived from a small pilot sample and correlated with female contribution to subsistence. The results indicated that female production is a necessary but not sufficient condition for the development of female status
Article
This paper suggests why the intensification of agriculture is associated with a relative decline in women's participation in agriculture. The statistical evidence described here is consistent with the theory that women contribute relatively less to agriculture when it becomes intensive because their domestic work and fertility have increased. It is also argued that most men may be able to contribute more to agriculture in societies cultivating intensively because hunting, warfare, and trade are not so likely to pull them away from crop production [women's contribution to subsistence, agricultural intensification, time allocation, fertility, cross-cultural]
Article
This paper examines possible ways in which female relationships can affect demographic outcomes within the context of an extended family structure in sub-Saharan Africa. The level of collaboration and competition that exists among coresident women is likely to have an impact on fertility through changes in birth spacing and stopping behavior. In addition, the extent of collaboration could be a contributing factor in the survival chances of infants and young children. Given the multitude of ethnic groups found on the African continent, the paper also addresses the independent and interactive roles of culture. The paper ends with a discussion of theoretical and methodological implications for demographic research and suggestions for further study.