A population out of control? Myths about Muslim fertility in contemporary India

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Abstract

This paper describes and criticizes myths about the scale and causes of fertility differentials between Hindus and Muslims in India. These ideas, associated with Hindu nationalist organizations, also have a more general common-sense quality. The paper challenges these views by examining how demographers have addressed Hindu-Muslim fertility differences, considering the impact of regional differences, variations in socioeconomic position, and occupation. We further suggest that these elaborate statistical analyses on large-scale data sets are not readily sensitive to local-level variations. Our micro-level research findings are used to illuminate both Hindu Right political rhetoric and the limitations of macro-level demographic analyses. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1805-1822
Number of pages18
JournalWorld Development
Volume30
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2002

Keywords

  • Asia
  • India
  • demography
  • religion
  • fertility
  • politics
  • BIJNOR
  • HINDUS
  • RIOTS
  • DIFFERENTIALS
  • VIOLENCE
  • RELIGION
  • STATE
  • WOMEN

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