This chapter reviews models of marriage, with special emphasis on how the sex ratio can help explain outcomes such as marriage formation, the intramarriage distribution of consumption goods, labor supply, savings, type of relationship, divorce, and intermarriage. Economic models of marriage pioneered by Gary Becker are reviewed in the first section and then extended in the next section to incorporate the labor market for the work-in-household approach of Grossbard. The following section discusses challenges in identifying exogenous variation in sex ratios and presents empirical evidence on the impact of sex ratios on labor supply, consumption, savings, and several other outcomes.
S Anukriti and Shatanjaya Dasgupta
This chapter reviews the economics literature on marriage in developing countries. Marriage in these countries differ from marriage in high-income countries in several crucial ways, including the prevalence of marriage and cohabitation; the process of mate selection; customs concerning the transfer of resources between families at the time of marriage; the laws governing marital dissolution; and cultural norms about gender roles in spousal interactions. This chapter describes how marital matching occurs, the trends in age at marriage, assortative mating patterns, marriage payments, and spousal decision making after a marriage has occurred. Lastly, it discusses trends and rationales for consanguineous and polygamous marriages—practices that are largely unique to the developing world.