chapter  7
21 Pages

Underfertility’s Challenge to Family and Gender Relations in Urban Greece

WithHeather Paxson

This chapter explains about the underfertility’s challenge to family and gender relations in urban Greece. It explains about the class and the making of modern families. Depicting the nation’s declining birthrate as a matter of economic and historic circumstance, rather than the outcome of individuals’ desires, middle-class Athenians are themselves attuned to socio-economic causes of small families. Modern motherhood is foremost about the quality of childhood one can offer as a parent; concern for the quantity of children produced follows. For middle-class Athenians, the ability to provide children with optimal opportunities and material comfort requires first a responsible approach to birth control. But instead of viewing social and economic factors as having direct impact on the sorts of things demographic statistics purport to measure, and therefore authors focus on reproductive attitudes when outlining policy recommendations, which aim at encouraging women to have larger families. The chapter describes demographic issues through a triple filter of class, gender and ethnicity.