Monday, August 27, 2012

Fewer cribs beneath brick and cold steel piping

As a small supplement to Jayman's neat post on population density and fertility in the developed world, here's what the GSS shows us regarding the mean number of children among whites aged 40-65 when the question was asked in the mid-nineties and again in 2000 by the type of community they live in. The descriptions are pretty self-explanatory, but to avoid unnecessary confusion are listed from the most densely populated to the least so:

Big city2.07
Suburbs, outskirts2.20
Small town2.32
Country village2.45
Farm, country home2.33

Cities have historically been population sinks and that trend continues in the present (actual TFR numbers are a little lower across the board than what is shown here, as the question on children includes step- and adopted kids as well as biological ones).

GSS variables used: COMTYPE, RACE(1), AGE(40-65), CHILDS


Dan said...

Clearly the impact of including adoption and step-children is substantial, adding perhaps half a kid to the averages, given that we know TFRs were substantially below 2 for white women in the 1970s and 1980s.

I would hypothesize that the impact of step-children is greater for urban dwellers, and that therefore I hypothesize that more urban kids are double counted in 'blended' families.

I also have a hunch that adoption is bigger in the cities, what with urban foster care systems. But I can't prove that. Those urban foster kids would be counted even though they are not part of white fertility.

Both of these would suggest that the urban-rural fertility gap is even larger than the GSS suggests.

Dan said...

Steve Sailer had the white fertility of Washington, DC at 1.11 in 2004.

Can DC's white fertility be all that different from Manhattan, Chicago, and other big cities?

I just know the fertility gap is even larger than your data suggest.

Aeoli Pera said...

Mmm, I love it when you validate stereotypes with data. We live in a world where ignorance is born from lots of misinformation, rather than a lack of information.

Keep up that struggle against obfuscation, AE!

P.S. Would love to see the ethnic breakdown.