By Maris A. Vinovskis
In school rooms and in residing rooms, in learn associations and on Capitol Hill, teenage being pregnant is without doubt one of the such a lot debatable public problems with our day. but in any case the research and govt attempt, what's fairly recognized in regards to the challenge of adolescent being pregnant and the way to accommodate it? and what's the function of the social scientist and historian in a public factor of this sort? during this examine, Maris Vinovskis--a admired demographic historian and a player in either Carter's and Reagan's Presidential tasks on teenage pregnancy--sets those questions inside of a historic framework and discusses a number of present concerns and coverage concerns. Vinovskis starts through analyzing adolescent sexuality and childbearing in early the United States and comparing even if there has actually been an ''epidemic'' of adolescent being pregnant in American background. within the following chapters, he addresses the increase of adolescent being pregnant as a countrywide factor and assesses the government's reaction to it, either in Congress and the Presidency. Bringing his special skills as a historian and a coverage planner to his learn, Vinovskis deals readers a provocative new context for figuring out a urgent public factor of the Nineteen Eighties.
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Additional resources for An ’’Epidemic’’ of Adolescent Pregnancy?: Some Historical and Policy Considerations
Obviously, teenage pregnancy is a real problem in today's society. But it does raise questions about the sense of urgency and crisis generated by the supporters of the legislation in the Carter Administration and the 95th Congress. If the demographics of adolescent pregnancy were the major determinant of the need for federal policy, the Adolescent Health, Services, and Pregnancy Prevention Act of 1978 should have been introduced twenty years ago. 12 But the supporters of the Adolescent Health, Services, and Pregnancy Prevention Act of 1978 created a sufficient sense of urgency about the "epidemic" of adolescent pregnancy, and the House conferees agreed to the Senate version of the bill, even though many of them still had serious reservations about hastily enacting such important legislation.
The cycle of premarital pregnancies in America resembles the English and French patterns. , 1980). To consider the trends in adolescent premarital pregnancies over time, we need to separate the data by the age at marriage of the women. Unfortunately, we only have such historical data from two Massachusetts communities—Andover and Hingham (see Figures l-2a and l-2b) (Smith and Hindus, 1975). The age-specific pattern in those communities roughly corresponds to the trend in total premarital pregnancies.
Both the policymakers and the news media emphasized the "epidemic" nature of adolescent pregnancy. 5 Throughout the debates on the Adolescent Health, Services, and Pregnancy Prevention Act of 1978, very few of the participants ever asked whether adolescent pregnancy in the 1970s was actually an unprecedented and growing problem for our society. 6 One can certainly defend the need to deal with the problems associated with adolescent pregnancy in America today. As has been already pointed out, nearly a million teenagers become pregnant each year and almost 500,000 of them have babies.
An ’’Epidemic’’ of Adolescent Pregnancy?: Some Historical and Policy Considerations by Maris A. Vinovskis