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Effects of sex preference and social pressure on fertility in changing Japanese families



This study explored how social pressure related to parental preference for the sex of their children affects fertility. Pre-war and post-war generations were compared using individual level data previously collected in Japan in 2002. In the pre-war generation, if the first child was a daughter, the total number of children tended to increase not only when the mother preferred a son, but also when the mother did not have a preference for either gender. This tendency was not observed for the post-war generation. Results suggest that social pressure related to giving birth to a son led to high fertility in the pre-war generation; however, fertility was not influenced by social pressure in the post-war generation.

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