Baby boom

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For other uses, see Baby boom (disambiguation).

A baby boom is any period marked by a greatly increased birth rate. This demographic phenomenon is usually ascribed within certain geographical bounds. People born during such a period are often called baby boomers; however, some experts distinguish between those born during such demographic baby booms and those who identify with the overlapping cultural generations. Conventional wisdom states that baby booms signify good times and periods of general economic growth and stability;[citation needed] however in circumstances where baby booms lead to very large number of children per family unit, such as in the case in lower income regions of the world, the outcome may be different. One common baby boom was right after WWII during the Cold War.


The HIV/AIDS crisis in Africa has contributed locally to a population boom. Aid money used for contraceptives has been diverted over the past two decades into fighting HIV, with the number of babies born far outstripping the deaths from AIDS.[1]


France experienced a baby boom after 1945; it reversed a long-term record of low birth rates.[2] The sense that the population was too small, especially in regard to more powerful Germany, was a common theme in the early twentieth century . Put in a list policies were proposed in the 1930s, and implemented in the 1940s.[3][4]

In addition, there was a steady immigration, especially from former French colonies in North Africa. The population grew from 41 million in 1946, to 50 million in 1966, and 60 million by 1990. The farm population decline sharply, from 35% of the workforce in 1945 to under 5% by 2000. By 2004, France had the second highest birthrate in Europe, behind only Ireland.[5][6]


  • Decreţei: (1967-1989), A baby boom in Romania caused by a ban on abortion and contraception.

United States[edit]

The term "baby boom" most often refers to the post–World War II baby boom (1946–1964) when the number of annual births exceeded 2 per 100 women (or approximately 1% of the total population size).[citation needed] There are an estimated 78.3 million Americans who were born during this demographic boom in births.[7] The term is a general demographic and is also applicable to other similar population expansions.

United States birth rate (births per 1000 population per year).[8] The United States Census Bureau defines the demographic birth boom as between 1946 and 1964[9] (red).

Recent baby boom periods include the following:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Rosenthal, Elisabeth (14 April 2012). "In Nigeria, a Preview of an Overcrowded Planet". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ Leslie King, "'France needs children'" Sociological Quarterly (1998) 39#1 pp: 33-52.
  3. ^ Marie-Monique Huss, "Pronatalism in the inter-war period in France." Journal of Contemporary History (1990) 25#1 pp: JSTOR
  4. ^ Colin L. Dyer, Population and Society in 20th Century France (1978)
  5. ^ Colin Jones, Paris: Biography of a City (2004) p 438
  6. ^ Gilles Pison, "La population de la France en 2005," Population et Sociétés (March 2006) #421 Online
  7. ^ "Baby Boom Population: U.S. Census Bureau, USA and by State". Boomers Life. 2008-07-01. Archived from the original on 5 June 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-18. 
  8. ^ CDC Bottom of this page "Vital Statistics of the United States, 2003, Volume I, Natality", Table 1-1 "Live births, birth rates, and fertility rates, by race: United States, 1909-2003."
  9. ^ U.S. Census Bureau — Oldest Boomers Turn 60 (2006)
  10. ^ Leung, Rebecca (2005-09-04). "The Echo Boomers". 60 Minutes (CBS News). Archived from the original on 30 August 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-24. 
  11. ^ Marino, Vivian (August 20, 2006). "College-Town Real Estate: The Next Big Niche?". The New York Times. p. 1. Retrieved September 25, 2010. College enrollments have been on the rise as the baby boomers' children — sometimes known as the "echo boom" generation — come of age. This group, born from 1982 to 1995, is about 80 million strong. 

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