Beauty, Polygyny and Fertility: Theory and EvidenceReportar como inadecuado

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1 The World Bank 2 CES - Centre d-économie de la Sorbonne 3 University of Ottawa Ottawa

Abstract : We propose a simple model of a mating economy in both monogamous and polygynous cultures, and derive implications for how polygyny affects individual and aggregate fertility. We find that an attractive woman is more likely to find a high-status husband. However, when polygyny is allowed, high-status husbands naturally attract other women; this implies that female beauty increases the likelihood of entering into a polygynous relationship. A woman in a polygynous relationship produces fewer children than a woman in a monogamous relationship as long as the preference for reproduction relative to consumption is not too strong. However, the societal practice of polygyny increases aggregate fertility through two distinct channels: 1 by increasing the number of marriages; 2 by triggering fertility contagion: a woman, whether involved in a monogamous or polygynous relationship, produces more children as polygyny becomes more prevalent in her neighborhood. We empirically validate each of the model-s key predictions.

Keywords : mating economy monogamy polygyny beauty status fertility contagion networks

Autor: Paul Cahu - Falilou Fall - Roland Pongou -



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