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Women’s Reproductive Response to Challenges of an Agricultural Frontier –The Case of Machadinho d'Oeste in the Brazilian Amazon

Juliana Vasconcelos, Cedeplar, UFMG
Laura L. R. R. Wong, Cedeplar/Ufmg
Alisson F. Barbieri, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG)

After nearly four decades of an impressive program of socio-economic development in the Brazilian Amazon that included massive immigration flow, we noticed important changes in the women’s strategy to implement reproductive preferences. The study approaches two cohorts of women that experienced their fertility life cycle at different stages of agricultural frontier development in the Brazilian Amazon. The initial context was of practically nonexistent infrastructure that became now a sort of consolidated agricultural frontier. These different conditions provoked different reproductive responses, thus the decisions would be different for women that lived their fertility cycle during either the initial or more advanced stages of the frontier. The study analyzes two cohorts in Machadinho d'Oeste, Rondônia, corresponding to the mentioned stages. We use qualitative methods. Results indicate that there is no direct relationship between land use and the number of children in the sense of what is established in the known literature. Despite a common profile (young age at first union and first child, and contraception failure and high rate of female surgical sterilization) the reproductive behavior of each cohort is quite different and rather related to the infrastructure of sexual and reproductive health services and to individual and frontier socioeconomic conditions

Keywords: Fertility and childbirth, Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, Family demography, Family planning and contraception

No extended abstract or paper available

  Presented in Session 204. Multidimensional Links: Environmental Conditions, Fertility, and Reproductive and Maternal Health