Sex preference and fertility behaviour in rural Bangladesh

Sarker, P.C.

South Asian Anthropologist 9(1): 49-54


Document Number: 366097
This paper discusses the customs and beliefs associated with the preference for male offspring and its effect on human fertility. The study is based on 12 months' field work (1975/76) in Kamnagar, a medium sized multi-religious, multi-caste and multi-sub-sect interior village in Rajshahi District. In Kamnagar, male offspring get special attention compared to female children. The sex preference is related to old age security, economic assistance, family strength, continuation of lineage, ritualistic reasons, social status, property inheritance, and dowry. The sex preference encourages higher fertility in relation to aspirations for having a son instead of a daughter.

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