Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964517 | Print ISBN: 9781412909167 | Online ISBN: 9781412964517| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Teen pregnancy is commonly defined as a pregnancy by a woman who has not reached the age of majority in her country. Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in the world at 143 per 1,000 women, while South Korea has the lowest at 3 per 1,000 women. The United States has the highest teenage birthrate in the developed world at 53 per 1,000 women and also has a high rate of teenage abortion. Teenage pregnancy has always occurred, but in recent years, many in the United States have defined it as a serious problem. Teen pregnancy is associated with negative outcomes for both mother and child. It is also associated with contested political and moral ideologies. The history of the concept of teenage pregnancy, the outcomes of teen pregnancy, and social policies all inform how U.S. society treats the issue. Teenage pregnancy was, in fact, more common in ...