Bride Price and Fertility Decisions: Evidence from Rural Senegal

  • Citation: Mbaye, Linguère Mously, and Natascha Wagner. “Bride Price and Fertility Decisions: Evidence from Rural Senegal.” The Journal of Development Studies 53, no. 6 (2016): 891–910.
    • Topics:
    • Human Rights
    • Keywords:
    • bride price
    • fertility
    • Senegal
    • Africa

This paper provides evidence about the relationship between bride price payments and fertility decisions in Senegal. Higher bride price payments reduce the fertility pressure for women with results being robust to confounding socio-economic and contextual factors. The fertility-reducing impact is greater for women who are economically dependent on their husbands. In polygamous households and for arranged marriages, a lower bride price increases fertility pressure while in monogamous households and for non-arranged marriages, the bride price does not affect fertility. As bride price payments have less power over (economically) independent women, empowerment will give leeway to girls in traditional societies.

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