Author: Lyman Stone (Lyman Stone)

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What Makes People Have Babies? The Link Between Cultural Values and Fertility Rates

If fertility declines because child mortality is falling, then almost any moral system would encourage most people to accept the trade-off. But if fertility is falling because Western countries promote a set of cultural narratives telling women in Africa, Asia, and Latin America that children are antithetical to a happy life, that the lifeways of their national communities are outdated and backwards, and that cultural legitimacy comes from emulating the family patterns of white Westerners, then there may be strong reasons to reject this model.