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Type: Journal article
Title: Women's fertility, religion and education in a low-fertility population: evidence from South Australia
Author: Newman, L.
Hugo, G.
Citation: Journal of Population Research, 2006; 23(1):41-66
Publisher: Australian Population Association
Issue Date: 2006
ISSN: 1443-2447
Statement of
Lareen A. Newman, Graeme J. Hugo
Abstract: The 'old' issue of religion and fertility is examined in relation to women's level of education. In-depth interviews exploring influences on parity for Adelaide parents in 2003-04 suggest that more frequent attendance at religious services in childhood, and affiliation with particular religious denominations, are related to both higher preferred and higher achieved parity, even for women with university education. For some university-educated women, their religious up-bringing appears to play a part in negating the traditional relationship between higher education and lower fertility. Quantitative data on religion, fertility and educational level from the 1996 Census for women aged 40-44 in South Australia show that women with 'No Religion' had lower fertility than those 'With a Religion', while university-educated women in New Protestant-New Christian groups had higher fertility than university-educated women in other denominations. The findings provide an understanding of some social conditions that support higher fertility in a low-fertility population. Future fertility research in developed countries should include consideration of the influence of religious affiliation and religiosity at disaggregated levels of inquiry.
Keywords: Education of women
religious affiliation
fertility behaviour
social norms
family environment
census data
Description: © Australian Population Association
DOI: 10.1007/BF03031867
Published version:;dn=393732722870189;res=IELHSS
Appears in Collections:Aurora harvest
Australian Population and Migration Research Centre publications
Geography, Environment and Population publications

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