The Impact of Family Size on the Health and Well-Being of Its Members. Families of Senior Civil Servants in Bohemia in the Second Half of the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries

Alice Velková, Charles University
Klára Hulíková Tesárková, Charles University in Prague

The nineteenth century brought a series of processes that significantly affected social conditions of people's lives. One of these processes was the demographic transition, which undoubtedly included behaviour that led to the restriction of previously unrestricted fertility. Behind the reduction in the number of children in families, it is possible to notice parents' efforts to give their offspring a better quality of life. The aim of this paper is to test whether better mortality rates for both children and their mothers can be observed in families with fewer children (one to three) than in families with four or more children. This research will be conducted using data relating to family members of senior civil servants working in Bohemia in the second half of the nineteenth century and the early twentieth century. These men represented a homogeneous elite group that could provide their offspring with better social conditions than the general population. However, we assume that the reduction in fertility, which generally began in Bohemia in the last quarter of the 19th century, positively impacted the well-being of their family members as well. We will test our research question using regression methods (Cox regression, logistic regression) on two generations of these men in order to identify to what extant these changes were caused by the demographic transition or by other factors.

No extended abstract or paper available

 Presented in Session 138. Long-Term Perspectives on Fertility and Its Consequences