Marriage and Family in Udmurtia between 1939-1959

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The article deals with the transformation of the marriage and family structures of the population of Udmurtia in the period between 1939 to 1959. Attention is paid to the study of the infl uence of the Great Patriotic War on the family and marriage in the republic. Sources used include census materials from 1939 and 1959 and statistical records from the period in question. With the beginning of the war, the number of marriages in Udmurtia sharply decreased. The smallest number of marriages was observed in 1942. In the countryside, this was a reduction of more than three times, indicating a unusually great shortage of men. A direct consequence of the war was a reduction in the average family size as well as an increase in families headed by women. By 1959, 38.5 % of families in the countryside were led by women. With the beginning of the Great Patriotic War, remarriages became more frequent in Udmurtia. Between 1944 and 1951 they were mostly concluded by women who presumably had lost their husbands in the fi ghting. The extramarital birth rate also sharply increased. In the post-war period, particularly in the rural areas many children were born out of wedlock. The extramarital birth rate reached its peak in 1950, when every third child in Udmurtia was born out of wedlock.

About the authors

Sergey N. Uvarov

Izhevsk State Agricultural Academy

Author for correspondence.

Kandidat Istoricheskikh Nauk [Ph.D. in History], Head of the Department of Russian History, Sociology andPolitical Science

11, Studencheskaya St., Izhevsk, Udmurt Republic, 426069, Russia


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