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Fertility and Number of Partnerships in Barbados

G. Edward Ebanks, P. M. George and Charles E. Nobbe
Population Studies
Vol. 28, No. 3 (Nov., 1974), pp. 449-461
DOI: 10.2307/2173639
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2173639
Page Count: 13
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Fertility and Number of Partnerships in Barbados
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Abstract

This paper examines the relationship between the number of partnerships ever engaged in and fertility, as measured by the average number of live births. It was found that the larger the number of partnerships in which a woman had been engaged the higher is her fertility. This relationship between partnerships and fertility remains even when such variables as present age, age at first partnership, age at first pregnancy, time lost between unions, time spent in partnerships, time since entry into the first partnership, type of sexual union at first pregnancy, present type of sexual union, and current use or non-use of contraceptives are controlled by cross tabulation. Correlation analysis also bears out the positive relationship between partnerships and fertility. The data for this study came from a sample survey of 4,199 women of lower, and lower middle, socio-economic status who were interviewed in 1971 on the island of Barbados. The authors have confidence in the reliability and validity of their data and hence in their findings and conclusions. The authors believe that their findings contradict the previously established positive relationship between patterns of stability of sexual unions and fertility in English-speaking Caribbean societies. They conclude that the relationship was either not rigorously examined in the past or else has undergone changes as these societies modernize economically and socially.

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