Boyd, Robert (1989). Childlessness and Social Mobility During the Baby Boom. Sociological Spectrum, 9(4)
America's post-war baby boom was an era of high fertility and widespread pronatalism. Supposedly, few couples during this time were childless by choice. However, by using a special census sample, this study shows that voluntary childlessness was relatively common in certain upwardly mobile segments of the population during the baby boom. In particular, the results support the classic Dumont-Banks model of status enhancement and fertility, which states that couples with the greatest disadvantages must make the greatest sacrifices of child-centered behavior. The theoretical implications of the findings are discussed and suggestions for future research proposed.