The Impact of China’s One-child Policy on Family Dynamics

The One-Child Policy introduced in 1979 by Deng Xiaoping has received both criticism and praise globally over the years. The Chinese leaders viewed the increasing numbers as a food surplus and economic development potential threat (Goh, 2011). The policy’s implementation has been successful with the significant drop in the population growth of the nation. The law’s critics argue that it violates the human rights because of the mandatory abortions, family planning, and sterilization. Additionally, the regulation has contributed to a widespread neglect and abandonment of the girl-child as more couples aspire to have a son. The challenges combined with the aging workforce and shrinking population have led to the Chinese government altering the law and introducing the two-child policy. The Chinese couples can now have two children effective from January 2016. The one-child policy meant to curb population growth led to competition for care and support, alteration of parenting and marriage perceptions, and changes in family relations and norms.

The establishment of the one-child policy was meant to contain the Chinese population growth rate. By the year 1979, China’s population was getting over one billion and this instilled fear in leaders, that if it was not controlled it could grow to unmanageable numbers. There were concerns about the social and economic impact that would arise from the high and ever-increasing population. The big families meant that the government had to provide more resources to its citizens, and this put a strain on their efforts and ability to take care of future generations. As a result, the Chinese government introduced the law that restricted a couple to only having one child with exceptions in some cases. Coercion and the establishment of punitive measures served to drive the Chinese people towards accepting the policy (Goh, 2011)….

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