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OCR for page 178
CHAPTER 8 MARITAL FERTILITY The total fertility rates analyzed up to this point reflect the effect of unmarried women' that is, they depend on a larger or smaller proportion of still- unmarried women En the various age brackets. In the 30-39 age bracket, the figure may be as high as 15 percent. Moreover, as noted above, this proportion varies from one context to another. Marital fertility as measured by the total marital fertility rate, the topic of the present chapter, by definition avoids this effect. Table 65 shows total Marital fertility rates for 1970 and 197S. In 1970' they varied from 3.70 to 9.61, and in 1975 from 2.96 to 9.64. In both cases' the lowest figure is for Santa Cruz do Sul-Urban, and the highest for Parnaiba-Urban and -Rural. As can be seen, except for Parnaiba-Rural, mari- tal fertility declined in all contexts between 1970 and 1975. The largest decline was registered for Sertaozinho {as noted above in the comparison of total fertility rates). In those populations where birth control is not practiced, the natural marital fertility pattern after 25 years of age is shown by a convex curve that drops slowly until age 35, and then falls abruptly to reflect the steep decrease in the proportion of fertile women. On the other hand, in populations that voluntarily control fertility, the rapid decline in marital fertility rates at early ages results in greatly reduced levels of fertility at the age of 3C), giving the curve a concave shape. Thus, the decline in world fertility levels involves a transition from a structural pattern represented by a convex curve to a new pattern represented by a concave curve. In Bra- zil, this transition can be seen in both high-fertili~y and low-fertility regions. This transition can be seen from Figure 6 (see page 40) by comparing the marital fertility curves representing 178

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179 TABLE 65 Total Marital Fertility Rates, Nine Contexts, 1970 and 1975: Brazil Total Marital Fertility Rate Percent Decline 197 5 Context 1970 1975 1970% Parnaiba-Rural 9.41 9.64 ~ 2. 44 (228) (243) Sao Jose dos Campos 6.35 S.26 17.25 ~ 417) ( 520 ) Recife 7.26 6037 12031 (386) (472) Conceicso do Araguaia 8.17 7 0 09 13 0 26 (231) (292) Parnaiba-Urban 9. 61 7 o 46 22.45 (231) (245) Sertaozinho 6. 69 4.72 29 c 42 1223) . (248) Cachoeiro 5.32 4 o 16 21.76 (197) ( 250 ) Santa Cruz-Rural 6.68 5.98 10.46 (225) (245) Santa Cruz-~rban 3. 70 2.96 20.02 (218) (234) Note: Numbers in parentheses are number of women. the six contexts with highest and lowest fertility levels in the NIaR. The curve for Brazil as a whole represents the middle point in the transition from a high level as in the case of Parnaiba-Rural (with a roughly convex curve)--to a low level--as in the case of Cachoeiro de Itapemirim (with a distinctly concave curve). These differing marital fertility patterns reflect varying distances from a natural-fertility pattern. Such distances occur in a typical manner and, according to Coale, can be measured through the parameter ~m,. known as the degree of fertility control, or how far fertility practice has moved away from natural fertility as a result of the use of contraceptives and abortion. The degrees of control estimated for the nine regions in 1970 and 1975 are shown in Table 66. As can be seen, in both 1970 and 197S, the greatest degrees of control were in Santa Cruz do Sul-Urban and Cachoeiro de Itape- mir~; in 1975, the value for the latter was higher than for the former. The lowest levels of control were in Parnaiba-Urban and -Rural and Conceicso do Araguaia. The evolution over time of these parameters shows that there was a clear increase in fertility control for all regions.

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180 TABLE 66 values for the Fertility Control Measure (m) Estimated by Coale's Method, 1970 and 1975: Brazil Context 1970 1975 Sao Jose dos Campos 0O7495 1.1792 Santa Cruz do Sul-Urban 1. 9284 lo 3880 Santa Cruz do Sul-Rural 0-0451 0O6624 Parnaiba-Urban -0.2444 0.2220 Parnaiba-Rural 0.0486 0.2361 Sertaozinho Conceicso do Araguaia Cachoeiro de Itapemirim Recife -- 1.2004 -- 0.1487 0.6604 1.4S47 0.0520 0.6721 Note: -- indicates sample size too small to calculate. The exception was Santa Cruz do Sul-Urban, which already had fairly high levels, where the degree of control fell from 1.9 to 1.4. This decrease was probably ache main factor leading to that region's increase in the total fertility rate from 2. S to 2.9 children between 1970 and 19750 The variations in fertility levels between 197Q and 1975 can be clarified by comparing them with the nuptial- ity parameters and degrees of control for the same period. In the case of Sao Jose, for example, the drop in fertil- ity was from 4.8 to 4.0 children between 1970 and 197S; this is associated with an increase in the degree of con- trol from 0.7 to 1.2, and with an increase in mean age at marriage and initial age at marriage from 21.2 to 23.S and lle83 to 14.90 years of age, respectively.