Marriage patterns and some issues related to adolescent marriage in Bangladesh.

M. M. Islam, M. Mahmud

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Data from the 1989 Bangladesh Fertility Survey are used to examine marriage patterns among adolescents, factors associated with adolescent marriage, and socioeconomic characteristics of married adolescents. Findings indicate that 100% of females married before the age of 30 years. The proportion of those never married increased after 1974 and among females aged 10-14 years and 15-19 years. The proportion of those never married increased from 73.4% to 95.8% among women aged 10-14 years and from 11.3% to 48.6% among women aged 15-19 years. In 1989 only 4% were married after age 20. 55% of total marriages occurred among women aged 13-15 years. 80% of total marriages occurred under 16 years of age. The highest mean age of marriage was found among women aged 20-29 years at the time of the survey. 63.9% of women who married before the age of 20 years married after menarche, 18.1% married before menarche, and 18.0% married during menarche. The average age at menarche was 13.4 years. 13.9% of marriages were dissolved among women who married before the age of 20 years, and 46% remarried. 8.5% of marriages were dissolved among ever married women who married after the age of 20 years, and only 24.4% remarried. Teenage marriage was more prevalent in rural areas and in Dhaka division, followed by Rajshahi division. About 70% of married adolescents were illiterate or had no formal education, and almost 86% did not work outside the home. Only 26% of married adolescents had husbands with more than a primary education. Marriages took place earlier among families with some land. 92.6% of married adolescents lived in poorly constructed housing. Logistic findings indicate that female education was closely associated with an increased chance of adolescent marriage. Low age at marriage was also influenced strongly by husband's occupation. Regional differences were significant covariates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-42
Number of pages16
JournalAsia-Pacific population journal / United Nations
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1996


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography

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