One Child Policy of China: Socio-Economic Effects

Topics: One-child policy, Marriage, Demography Pages: 5 (1733 words) Published: April 23, 2011
China is world’s most populous and fastest emerging economy that is seen as a continent in it instead of being part of Asia. In recent years, developed nations have been surprised by the acceleration of development in country that they give examples of success stories based on China’s market. Apart from China’s sophisticated with complex economic and political system, China also demonstrate interesting trends in several different prospects of society that are often neglected by intellectuals. There main focus is always on economic and political reform, But in this essay main focus is on the china’s population and the cultural rituals of family, gender and marriage. To add more, further elaboration will be addressed on the changing trends in the Chinese culture based on these elements. China’s population is 1.3 billion that contributes to 1/5 of world’s population. China’s community has this believe of “ the more the better” which was initiated by Mao. He believed higher populations means more workers, which can proliferate the economy. Chinese people in rural areas still have this thinking of more children will bring high income in the family. Before the government didn’t take this rise in population that seriously until early 70s when population reached the mark of 800 million. Population control became the main agenda since if fertility rate wasn’t controlled than it might result in the food shortage. The slogans were developed like “ Later, Longer and fewer” to control the birth rates. Even though they were effective, Population wasn’t suppressed until “ ONE-CHILD” policy came in. This policy and its conduct has been a perfect example of government power in the region that often astonishes other countries dealing with similar problems like India. When it comes to China and population, its important to know about this policy, which is effective till date. I will go in more content details of this policy since it has been virtually the biggest population control program in the world. Launched in 1979, the policy compromises of minimum marriage age, number of children and spacing between children. It also supports mandatory abortions, sterilizations and other means to prevent conceiving baby. Local rules have been developed in rural china that suits best to meet requirement of population growth rate. In urban areas, couple is only allowed one child. The only exception given to have second birth is when first child have mental or physical disability. In rural families, second child is allowed if first child is girl or after the spacing of five years between first and second child. As a result of this one child policy, fertility rate has dropped lower than the replacement i.e. 2 child/woman. Of course there are negative consequences of this policy for instance increasing population of elderly population in the coming years that will impact economy negatively since the baby boom will be in elder age not in working age. Furthermore, it will increase the pressure of family dependency, which will be talked about in coming sections due to family responsibilities. But for most countries “one-child” policy stands out when it comes to China and its population. Moving on, this section will focus mainly on family, gender and marriage rituals in Chinese culture. The norms of Chinese culture will be touched briefly followed by correlating the changing trends brought about by one child policy as well as socio-economic factors on these traditional practices. Just like many developing countries, China has its own history of customs. Women are always considered weaker compared to men. Women were meant to do household works, where some were allowed to work provided that they were married. Marriages are intended to happen among the people within same cast and community. Chinese individuals are not allowed to marry another race person. Furthermore, family arranged most of the marriages, and the extramarital affairs are considered acts of...
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