When not to have another baby: An evolutionary approach to low fertility

by Ruth Mace
Demographic Research, Vol. 30, Article 37, pp. 1074−1096, 4 April 2014

25 pp. 323 kB:

In this paper, the author explains the theoretical foundations of fertility from the perspective of evolutionary demography and evolutionary anthropology. Her goal in this paper is to provide examples of how evolutionary demography is generating and testing new hypotheses about human fertility and parental behaviour. To illustrate the paradigm of low fertility, she presents several evolutionary explanations for reduced fertility, or no fertility at all. The explanations she cites are drawn from studies on child maltreatment, homosexual preference, post-demographic transition low fertility, and late-life low fertility (menopause), as these are phenomena that appear to challenge evolutionary approaches.

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