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Husband-Wife Survey Responses in Malawi

Kate Miller, Eliya Msiyaphazi Zulu and Susan Cotts Watkins
Studies in Family Planning
Vol. 32, No. 2 (Jun., 2001), pp. 161-174
Published by: Population Council
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2696344
Page Count: 14
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Husband-Wife Survey Responses in Malawi
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Abstract

Previous efforts by demographers to describe and explain spousal differences in reporting about family planning behavior have focused on individual attributes that are assumed to be related to the practice of contraception. This study extends that research by documenting spousal disagreement on a range of issues-household items, livestock, children, and spousal communication about fertility, family planning, and AIDS. Using data from a 1998 study of 585 monogamous couples in rural Malawi, the analysis identifies a systematic gender component to reporting: For many of the survey questions considered, when spouses disagree, husbands are more likely to say "yes" and wives "no." The findings are interpreted in terms of gendered strategies in the interview process.

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