Discusses the population and fertility issues that occur in a rural Indian village


Most population education programs in India have been based on the assumption that children at all ages can learn about population related matters in school which will modify later fertility behavior. Yet, as is illustrated in this monograph, the most important learning regarding fertility behavior may be unrelated to any school activity and an understanding of the nature of this learning can be useful to program planners.The present research approaches the problem from the standpoint of the socialization of youth. Socialization is not only the preparation of youth to perform traditional roles but also the teaching of new roles which are necessary as a result of changes affecting the society. It is the consistency with which roles are performed from one generation to the next that maintains established social structure and much has been made of the need to change the structure of peasant societies if fertility is to be changed. A focus on the role of socialization may help assess the extent to which social change is taking place.

Thomas POFFENBERGER is Professor of Population Planning at the University of Michigan.