Abstract

Doblhammer G. Reproductive history and mortality later in life: A comparative study of England and Wales and Austria. Population Studies 2000; 54 (2): 169-176.

Does a woman's reproductive history influence her life span? This study explores the question with data from the contemporary female populations of England and Wales and Austria. It is the first comparative study to investigate the relationship between fertility and mortality late in life. We find similar patterns and age-specific trends of excess mortality in both populations: parity significantly influences longevity, as do both an early and a late birth. These differences in longevity are not explained by differences in educational or family status. The impact of a woman's reproductive history on her life span is small, however, compared to the influence of her level of education or family status.