Child Mortality During
the Demographic Transition
A Longitudinal Analysis of a Rural
Population in Southern Sweden, 1776-1894

By Kent Johansson
November 2004
Almqvist & Wiksell
ISBN: 9122020780
254 pages, Illustrated, 6" x 8 "
$99.50 Paper Original

The great decline in mortality has had a vital impact on our societies since life expectancy has more than doubled in the past 200 years, but the reasons for it are still not clear. Most of the decline before 1900 was in infant and child mortality, the latter of which is the subject matter of this thesis.

Mortality for the age group 1 to 14 in four Scanian rural populations for the period 1766 to 1894 is analyzed by means of a multivariate hazard regression model. The model includes both childhood and early life determinants, such as disease load, nutrition intake, socio-economic status, and birth season.

A three-period subdivision of this model accounts for enclosures, land partitionings, and industrialization, making it possible to compare how transition from one type of society to another affected child mortality. The empirical analysis shows that children with a high disease load during the foetal stage and infancy experienced increased mortality; in other words that conditions very early in life influenced mortality in childhood.

Lund Studies in Economic History, No. 30

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