Browse By:


Thursday February 21, 2019 Login |Register


A Project of

sponsored by

Why Contemporary American Jews Want Small Families: An Interreligious Comparison of College Graduates

Bookmark and Share Report Misuse or Glitches

Publication Date: January 1981

Publisher(s): E.J. Brill (Firm)

Author(s): Steven M. Cohen; Paul Ritterband

Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive

Topic: Culture and religion (Religion and religious groups)
Population and demographics (Family planning)

Keywords: American Jews; Fertility; Family

Type: Report

Coverage: United States

Abstract:

It is well established that among major American religious groups Catholics, have, expect to have, and want to have the largest families. They are followed in turn by Protestants, who in turn exceed Jews. Westoff, Potter and Sagi (1964) report that "religious preference, that is, preference for the Protestant, Catholic or Jewish faith, is the strongest of all major social influences on fertility." In this paper we shall address two problems. First, we shall attempt to account for differences in desired family size by religion. Second, we shall examine the routes to group mean desired family size. The first of these problems has been the subject of a large body of research which we shall review in this paper. The second issue is, in a sense, derivative from the first, yet distinct. Groups may well want the same family size (i.e., group mean fertility) but arrive at their result through different routes. Thus, we shall be examining: (a) religious group differences in family size desires, and (b) religious group differences in determinants of family size desires.

In Modern Jewish Fertility, ed. by Paul Ritterband, Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1981, p.209-231.