Intercultural Marriage and Its Impact on Fertility in Taiwan

Yu-Hua Chen, National Taiwan University

Although spousal resemblance on educations and occupations has increased in Taiwanese society, the official statistics do show a delay in the age at first marriage and fewer marriages among women in particular. Many blue-collar male workers and farmers have been suffered more from these changes in the marriage market. With stronger demands to form family, to have descendants and to support elders, these men are more likely to adopt intercultural marriages of which most wives come from mainland China and Southeast Asia. The first part of this paper describes major changes in marital behaviors and attitudes among Taiwanese, following by a discussion on their direct and indirect influence on fertility. Then, the reasons accounting for the emergence of intercultural marriages will be delineated on the basis of the latest survey of foreign and mainlander spouses’ living condition. A comparison regarding reproduction outcomes between Taiwanese and non-Taiwanese women is provided in the final part of this paper. Our findings show the average birth rate of foreign spouses from Southeast Asia is higher than their Taiwanese counterparts, while the data have evidenced more spouses from mainland China who are more likely to be childless. In addition, the traditional preference for son is particularly widespread among couples of intercultural marriages.

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Presented in Poster Session 1