Demographic transition and marital status of women in Iran

Shahla Kazemi-pour Sabet, Faculty of Social Sciences,Tehran University
Mohammad Mirzaie, University of Tehran
Abtin Rahimian, Population Studies and Research Center, Iran

The aim of this paper is to describe the marital status of Iranian women in terms of socio economic changes in the recent decades. At the first of 20 century, fertility and mortality rates were at natural level fertility rate (40%) and mortality rates 35%.Political stabilization of the society, urban expansion, improvements in health facilities led to decline in general mortality and infant mortality rates. Increasing in life expectancy and prolonged reproductive period casual a relative increase in fertility rates, almost 50% during 1956-1966. As a result, annual growth rate was increasing during 1900-1966. It was nearly 3% in 1966. After 1966 as a result of adopting family planning program, rising literacy and education, urban expansion fertility rates. Adoption of pronatalist policy by revolutionary government stopped the decline and raised fertility. Revival of family planning in 1986 declined the fertility rates. In 2002 fertility and mortality rates were 22 and 8 per 1000, respectively. The growth rate was 1.4%. Iran has been experienced demographic transition stage. Due to remarkable changes in socio–economic and cultural aspects of Iranian society, marriage is in transitional stage. It losses previous characteristics and gains characteristics similar to those of industrial societies. Prevalence of marriage among rural dwellers, women, less educated and illiterate population is still higher. Mean age at marriage significantly has increased for women (from 18 to 23 year). It could be concluded that prevalence of early marriage is declining. Noticeable changes observed in partner selection procedure. High proportion of couples selects their partner by themselves, rather than being advised by their parents. Prevalence of marriage is declining for women. Almost 3.45 of women aged 40-44 are single. The lower chance of marriage for these groups it could be concluded that they will remain in celibacy.

Presented in Poster Session 1