Abstract

Period fertility rates show a recent rise in the fertility of the Malay population of Peninsular Malaysia that became evident in the late 1970s, after more than fifteen years of slow but steady declines. Detailed analysis of age-parity-specific fertility rates suggests that the recent rise is largely due to a “making up” of lower order births (first, second, and third) that had been postponed by a rapid increase in age at marriage. The period trend in higher order births and cohort trends of cumulative fertility from census data point to a continued reduction in completed Malay fertility. Regional analysis shows several states on the east coast with persistent high fertility, although the revolution in marital postponement is national in scope.

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