A marriage trichotomy and its applications

Abstract

This paper promotes research methods specific to men, the new focus of fertility and family planning studies (especially in sub-Saharan Africa). I propose a novel marriage categorization based on married men’s intentions to take another wife. The three marriage groups are currently monogamous men who intend to remain so, currently monogamous men who intend to become polygynous, and currently polygynous men. The first analysis demonstrates that typical marriage analyses may misclassify men who intend to become polygynous. Applications of the marriage trichotomy illustrate that men with varying marital intentions have differing desires regarding fertility and family planning.

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Permission to use these DHS data was granted by Macro International Inc. The research was undertaken while the author was on a National Institutes of Health training grant at Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health. Additional support was provided by a postdoctoral fellowship from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to conduct research at the Carolina Population Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I thank W. Henry Mosley and Nan M. Astone for their helpful suggestions.

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Speizer, I.S. A marriage trichotomy and its applications. Demography 32, 533–542 (1995). https://doi.org/10.2307/2061673

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Keywords

  • Family Planning
  • Additional Child
  • Fertility Desire
  • Desire Family Size
  • World Fertility Survey