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Son Preference and Sex Composition of Children: Evidence from India

Shelley Clark
Demography
Vol. 37, No. 1 (Feb., 2000), pp. 95-108
Published by: Springer on behalf of the Population Association of America
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2648099
Page Count: 14
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Son Preference and Sex Composition of Children: Evidence from India
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Abstract

Although the effect of son preference on sex composition of children ever born is undetectable in national-level estimates that aggregate across all families, this article provides empirical evidence from India that son preference has two pronounced and predictable family-level effects on the sex composition of children ever born. First, data from India show that smaller families have a significantly higher proportion of sons than larger families. Second, socially and economically disadvantaged couples and couples from the northern region of India not only want but also attain a higher proportion of sons, if the effects of family size are controlled.

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