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Ann Hum Biol. 2004 Jan-Feb;31(1):38-48.

Consanguinity, intracommunity and intercommunity marriages in a population sample of Israeli Jews.

Author information

1
Department of Human Genetics, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel. tirza@cc.huji.ac.il

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Changes in the marriage patterns of Israeli Jews have been associated with the mass immigration of Jews from many countries over a relatively short period of time.

AIM:

This study seeks to document consanguineous, intracommunity and intercommunity marriage patterns, and to observe the changes that have occurred over time, and in relation to the level of education and religiousness.

SUBJECT AND METHODS:

During 1990-1992, 4388 Jewish women were interviewed after delivery in maternity wards throughout Israel. Demographic information was received, with special emphasis on country of origin, community and consanguinity of the couples and their parents.

RESULTS:

The consanguinity rate among the couples was 2.3%, including 0.8% first cousin marriages, with the highest consanguinity rate among Eastern Jews (7.1%). The rate of intracommunity marriages was 64% (25% Ashkenazim, 22% Sephardim and 17% Eastern Jews). The rate of intercommunity marriages was lowest among Ashkenazim. It rose with the level of education and inversely to the degree of religiousness.

CONCLUSION:

Over the past decades there has been a decline in consanguineous and intracommunity marriage rates and an increase in intercommunity marriages. Immigrant and ultraorthodox women tended to marry within the community as opposed to Israeli-born women and those with higher educational level who tended to intermarry with other communities as well.

PMID:
14742164
DOI:
10.1080/0301446032000159255
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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