Nonmarital Childbearing in Russia: Second Demographic Transition or Pattern of Disadvantage?
- 843 Downloads
Using retrospective union, birth, and education histories that span 1980–2003, this study investigates nonmarital childbearing in contemporary Russia. We employ a combination of methods to decompose fertility rates by union status and analyze the processes that lead to a nonmarital birth. We find that the increase in the percentage of nonmarital births was driven mainly by the growing proportion of women who cohabit before conception, not changing fertility behavior of cohabitors or changes in union behavior after conception. The relationship between education and nonmarital childbearing has remained stable: the least-educated women have the highest birth rates within cohabitation and as single mothers, primarily because of their lower probability of legitimating a nonmarital conception. These findings suggest that nonmarital childbearing Russia has more in common with the pattern of disadvantage in the United States than with the second demographic transition. We also find several aspects of nonmarital childbearing that neither of these perspectives anticipates.
KeywordsNonmarital childbearing Cohabitation Fertility Single mothers Russia
This research was supported by a core grant from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Health and Child Development to the Center for Demography and Ecology at the University of Wisconsin–Madison (R24 HD047873) and the Max Planck Institute. The Russian Generations and Gender Survey (GGS) was conducted by the Independent Institute of Social Policy (Moscow) with the financial support of the Pension Fund of the Russian Federation and the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, Germany. The design and standard survey instruments of the GGS were adjusted to the Russian context by the Independent Institute of Social Policy (Moscow) and the Demoscope Independent Research Center (Moscow) in collaboration with the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (Rostock, Germany). We are grateful to Jan Hoem, anonymous reviewers, and colleagues at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research for comments on earlier versions.
- Anderson, E. (1990). Streetwise: Race, class, and change in an urban community. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Becker, G. (1981). A treatise on the family. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Edin, K., & Kefalas, M. (2005). Promises I can keep: Why poor women put motherhood before marriage. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.Google Scholar
- Houle, R., & Shkolnikov, V. (2005). Low response rates in the cities of Moscow and Sankt-Peterburg and GGS-census comparisons of basic distributions. Working document provided with the GSS data file for Russia. Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany.Google Scholar
- Inglehart, R. (1990). Culture shift in advanced industrial society. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Kiernan, K. (2004). Unmarried cohabitation and parenthood: Here to stay? European perspectives. In D. P. Moynihan, T. Smeeding, & L. Rainwater (Eds.), The future of the family (pp. 66–95). New York: Russell Sage Foundation.Google Scholar
- Klugman, J., & Motivans, A. (Eds.). (2001). Single parents and child welfare in the New Russia. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
- Kon, I. S. (1995). The sexual revolution in Russia: From the age of the Czars to today. Translated by J. Riordan. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
- Kostova, D. (2007). The emergence of cohabitation in a transitional socio-economic context: Evidence from Bulgaria and Russia. Demografia, 50(5), 135–62.Google Scholar
- Lesthaeghe, R., & Surkyn, J. (2002). New forms of household formation in central and eastern Europe: Are they related to newly emerging value orientations? Interuniversity papers in demography. Brussels, Belgium: Interface Demography (SOCO), Vrije Universiteit Brussel.Google Scholar
- Maleva, T., & Sinyavskaya, O. (2007). Roditeli i Deti, Myzhchini i Zhenschini v Semye i Obschestve [Parents and children, men and women in family and society], vol. 1. Moscow: IISP.Google Scholar
- Mroz, T., & Popkin, B. V. (1995). Poverty and the economic transition in the Russian federation. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 22, 2–31.Google Scholar
- Musick, K. (2007). Cohabitation, nonmarital childbearing and the marriage process. Demographic Research, 16, article 9:249–86. Available online at http://www.demographic-research.org/Volumes/Vol16/9.
- Muszynska, M. (2008). Women’s employment and union dissolution in a changing socio-economic context in Russia. Demographic Research, 18, article 6:181–204. Available online at http://www.demographic-research.org/Volumes/Vol18/6.
- Oppenheimer, V. K. (2003). Cohabiting and marriage during young men’s career-development process. Demography, 40, 127–49.Google Scholar
- Perelli-Harris, B., Sigle-Rushton, W., Lappegard, T., Jasilioniene, A., Di Giulio, P., Keizer, R., & Koeppen, K. (2009). Examining nonmarital childbearing in Europe: Does childbearing change the meaning of cohabitation? Presented at the annual meeting of the Population Association of America, Detroit, April 30–May 2.Google Scholar
- Philipov, D., & Jasiloniene, A. (2008). Union formation and fertility in Bulgaria and Russia: A life table description of recent trends. Demographic Research, 19, article 62:2057–14. Available online at http://www.demographic-research.org/volumes/vol19/62.
- Roussel, L. (1989). La famille incertaine [The uncertain family]. Paris: Odile Jacob.Google Scholar
- Sobotka, T. 2008. “The diverse faces of the second demographic transition in Europe.” Demographic Research, 19, article 8:171–224. Available online at http://www.demographic-research.org/volumes/vol19/8.
- Sobotka, T., Zeman, K., & Kantorová, V. (2003). Demographic shifts in the Czech Republic after 1989: A second demographic transition view. European Journal of Population, 19, 249–77.Google Scholar
- Surkyn, J., & Lesthaeghe, R. (2004). Value orientations and the second demographic transition (SDT) in northern, western, and southern Europe: An update. Demographic Research, Special Collection 3, article 3:45–86. Available online at http://www.demographic-research.org/special/3/3.
- Van de Kaa, D. (2001). Postmodern fertility preferences: From changing value orientation to new behavior. Population and Development Review, 27(Suppl.), 290–331.Google Scholar
- Ventura, S. (2009). Changing patterns of nonmarital childbearing in the United States (NCHS Data Brief No. 18). Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics.Google Scholar
- Vikat, A., Spéder, Z., Beets, G., Billari, F. C., Bühler, C., Désesquelles, A., et al. (2007). Generations and gender survey (GGS): Towards a better understanding of relationships and processes in the life course. Demographic Research, 17, article 14):389–440. Available online at http://www.demographic-research.org/Volumes/Vol17/14.
- Vishnevsky, A. G. (1996). Family, fertility, and demographic dynamics in Russia: Analysis and forecast. In J. Da Vanzo (Ed.), Russia’s demographic “crisis” (pp. 1–35). Santa Monica, CA: RAND Center for Russia and Eurasia.Google Scholar
- Wu, L. L., Bumpass, L. L., & Musick, K. (2001). Historical and life course trajectories of nonmarital childbearing. In L. L. Wu & B. Wolfe (Eds.), Out of wedlock: Causes and consequences of nonmarital fertility (pp. 3–48). New York: Russell Sage Foundation.Google Scholar
- Wu, L. L., & Wolfe, B. (Eds.). (2001). Out of wedlock: Causes and consequences of nonmarital fertility. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.Google Scholar
- Zakharov, S. V. (2008). The first and second demographic transition in Russia: Recent trends in the context of historic experience. In T. Frejka, T. Sobotka, J. Hoem, & L. Toulemon (Eds.), Childbearing trends and policies: Country case studies (pp. 907–72). Rostock, Germany: Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research.Google Scholar
- Zakharov, S. V., Vishnevskii, A. G., & Sakevich, V. I. (2005). Brachnost i rozhdaemost [Marriage and fertility]. In A. G. Vishnevskii (Ed.), Naselenie Rossii [Population of Russia] (pp. 40–130). Moscow: Higher School of Economics.Google Scholar