We try to investigate the effects of household composition and SES on the reproductive process of married women by comparing some rural and semi-urban populations of northern and central Italy. At the same time, the local economic context will also be accounted for by introducing proxies for short-term variations in prices. Finally, we consider reproduction as a function of the demographic characteristics of each couple, their reproductive history, the structure of the household in which they lived , as well as individual and household responses to epidemics and short-term economic stress. In this way, we will highlight some of the most important variables playing a role in the transition from the natural fertility regime to the onset of the fertility decline.
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