An Analysis of Out-of-Wedlock Childbearing in the United States
George A. Akerlof,
Janet L. Yellen and
Michael L. Katz
The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 1996, vol. 111, issue 2, pages 277-317
This paper relates the erosion of the custom of shotgun marriage to the legalization of abortion and the increased availability of contraception to unmarried women in the United States. The decline in shotgun marriage accounts for a significant fraction of the increase in out-of-wedlock first births. Several models illustrate the analogy between women who do not adopt either birth control or abortion and the hand-loom weavers, both victims of changing technology. Mechanisms causing female immiseration are modeled and historically described. This technology-shock hypothesis is an alternative to welfare and job-shortage theories of the feminization of poverty.
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations View citations in EconPapers (40) Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: http://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:111:y:1996:i:2:p:277-317.
Access Statistics for this article
The Quarterly Journal of Economics is currently edited by Robert J. Barro, Elhanan Helpman, Lawrence F. Katz and Andrei Schleifer
More articles in The Quarterly Journal of Economics from Oxford University Press
Series data maintained by Oxford University Press ().