Fertility Behaviour of Women: Is Son Preference Still a Proximate Factor?

Type Working Paper - International Journal of Social and Economic Research
Title Fertility Behaviour of Women: Is Son Preference Still a Proximate Factor?
Volume 2
Issue 2
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2012
Page numbers 419-426
URL http://www.indianjournals.com/ijor.aspx?target=ijor:ijser&volume=2&issue=2&article=027
Gender preferences may have substantial implications on the fertility behaviour of couples. Hank and Hans-Kohler (2002) suggest that sex preferences for children might have implications for a couple's fertility behaviour, where parents who desire one or more children of a certain sex should tend to have larger families than would otherwise be the case. The absence of sons increases the probability of an additional birth by significantly more than the absence of daughters (Jfriedman et al., 2008). In India as a whole, both attitudes and behaviour are vitally influenced by a long standing preference for sons, which is deeply rooted in the cultural traditions of the society (Mutharayappa, Rangamuthia, Choe, Minja, Arnold,, Fred, et. al., 1997). Education, high financial status and modernisation do not appear to reduce son preference significantly. In this study an attempt is made to find out how the son preference and fertility behaviour of women are related and the effect of demographic variables such as education, income, area of living, religion, number of children, reported ideal family size, gender and birth order of children on son preference.

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