Marriage, Fertility, and Women’s Agency in Tunisia
Economic Research Forum, Working Paper, No. 1157 (2017)
25 Pages Posted: 28 Jun 2021
Date Written: June 16, 2017
Three important interconnected spheres shape women’s lives in Tunisia: marriage, fertility and agency over their lives and those of their families. This paper focuses on the forces that shape women’s choices and the patterns of their lives and how these choices and patterns have evolved over time. Specifically, the paper examines marriage decisions, such as whether and at what age women marry and what living arrangements they adopt at marriage. We also investigate the crucial decisions women and their husbands make vis-à-vis procreation, along with fertility correlates such as age and education level. Finally, we examine the scope of women’s agency over a variety of decisions, as well as the links between women’s employment and marital status. Relying on the Tunisia Labor Market Panel Survey (TLMPS) 2014 data, this paper highlights differences between urban and rural areas, different regions in Tunisia, and across women of different socio-economic statuses.
Keywords: Marriage, Fertility, Empowerment, Gender, Tunisia
JEL Classification: J1
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