Fertile Debates: A Comparative Account of Low Fertility in the Greek and British National Press

Katerina Georgiadis, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

This paper compares how the Greek and British mainstream national press approached low fertility between 2001 and 2009. It describes not only the frequency with which the issue was mentioned by each set of newspapers but also the causes and consequences that they associated with it. Included in the discussion, are the Greek and British print media’s suggestions (e.g. measures or policy solutions) about how to deal with below-replacement fertility. Throughout the paper, the causes, consequences and solutions offered by the press are compared to those from the relevant demographic literature as well as a deliberately small sample of Greek and British women's personal accounts of reproductive decision-making, which were gathered by the author during an extensive period of fieldwork in Athens and London between 2001 and 2005. The paper ends with a discussion of the media's role in constructing and distributing particular forms of knowledge about demographic phenomena.

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Presented in Session 56: Social Demographic Aspects of Fertility: International Perspectives