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Population control in China

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Introduction

Population control in China In 1950's China, under the government weakened by its countries opium dependence to westerners, the idea still existed that, "A large population gives a strong nation" This lead to China's population growing very rapidly, so rapidly in fact that this phrase was beginning to prove in correct. As china's population struggled to feed it's self, as well as extreme overcrowding especially in its cities. The death rate in china dropped (except for a blip in the natural decrease caused by a minor famine in the 1960's) and its birth rate continued to grow rapidly. Even after the government implemented tolerant population control policies, for example the "later longer fewer policy". The hope was that if people were encouraged to wait longer before marrying, they would have children later in life and therefore is much more likely to have fewer children. However this did not produce dramatic enough results to help slow China's rapidly growing population and end its pending famine crisis. This is probably due to: a) People were still living in a very traditional way. ...read more.

Middle

People moved away from rural areas and their traditional work as farmers to towns and cities, to work in factories, often owned by western countries brought to china by cheap labour costs compared to the western world. This influx of western ideas thwarted the government's campaign, as the later longer fewer Policy was not considered attractive by the Chinese population who moved towards a western ideal. But the government continued and by 1970, State Family Programmes had been introduced. This lowered the population growth rate. In 1978 3 children per family was average but the government persisted, as this was still too many. This was in the form of various advertising campaigns, however their effect was not dramatic enough, and in 1979, the government wished to stamp out population growth completely. So they introduced a strict population policy. The policy used a "carrot and stick" method to encourage families who participated, and punish those who did not. Encouragement was in the form of great incentives from the government. These included free education for the child, priority housing, family benefit and a state pension for the family. ...read more.

Conclusion

If a families first born child was female, it was at times abandoned so that the couple could try again for a boy. The Chinese government also commissioned teams to go from village to village providing a sterilisation service. This at times was a very unfair method and often breached human rights. As the teams were paid by the number of operations they carried out. So often women were sterilised against their will. In Chinas anti-feminist society it was almost always that women were sterilised instead of men. The government would defend their actions saying that there was a serious need for rapid population control or there would have been further suffering to the people. Credit can be given that the scheme worked and met target before time. Today regulations on population control have been relaxed mainly due to the fact that all targets have been met. But also because of pressure from the west. This is mainly in rural areas of china where children are still a useful form of labour on farms, so two children is permitted. But in industrial regions one child is still most likely. Sterilisation is now provided in a manner that is less likely to be damaging and in breach of human rights. ...read more.

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