Family Planning, Sex Selection, and Gender Bias in China and India

Gender Bias in the Past and Future of Asia

This three-quarter-long seminar series is a John E. Sawyer Seminar on the Comparative Study of Cultures funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The series examines factors contributing to, and implications of, the male-biased population sex ratio in contemporary China, contemporary India, and late imperial China. The significance of this topic is difficult to over-estimate. There are an estimated 60-100 million "missing" girls and women in Asia, and the Chinese government expects 50 million "surplus" men by 2050. Sex-selective abortions, which contribute significantly to this bias, are widely used in China, India, and even parts of the US with large Asian immigrant communities, including Santa Clara County, California.

Speakers, 9am - 12:00pm:

  1. Tyrene White (Swarthmore College, Political Science, birth planning policy, China)
    "Missing Decade': The Gendering of Fertility Control in China in the 1970s"
    Tyrene White is Professor of Political Science at Swarthmore College. She is the author of China's Longest Campaign: Birth Planning in the People's Republic, 1949-2005 (Cornell, 2006), and many articles on rural politics and population policy in China. She is the editor of China Briefing: The Continuing Transformation (2000) and co-editor of Engendering China: Women, Culture, and the State (1994). She teaches courses on contemporary China, East Asia, and global population politics.

  2. Yi-Li Wu (Albion College, women’s medicine in LIC, drug prescriptions to make fetus male)
    "Whose fault was it when people had no sons? Gender and the medicalization of infertility in late imperial China."
    Yi-Li Wu is a historian of Chinese medicine and the author of Reproducing Women: Medicine, Metaphor, and Childbirth in Late Imperial China (University of California Press, 2010). She earned her Ph.D. from Yale University and is currently an associate professor of history at Albion College (Michigan). Her present book project is a comparative study of European and Chinese medicine in the mid-19th century.

  3. Shripad Tuljapurkar (Biology, Stanford)
    "Fertility In India: Declines and Consequences"
    Shripad Tuljapurkar is Dean & Virginia Morrison Professor of Population Studies and Professor of Biology at Stanford University. He directs the Center for Population Research, is a coPI of the Center for the Demography and Economics of Health and Aging, and a member of Berkeley’s Center for the Demography and Economics of Aging. His research spans population ecology, population genetics, demography, and aging. He has served on many national and international panels, including the 2007-8 Technical Advisory Panel to the US Social Security Administration. In 1996, he received the Mindel Sheps Award from the Population Association of America and in 1998, the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship.


Respondents, 1:30pm - 3:30pm:

  1. Matthew Sommer (History, Stanford University)
  2. Li Shuzhuo(Institute for Population and Development Studies, Xi'an Jiaotong University)

Friday, April 15, 2011 | 9:00 am — 3:30 pm
Munger Conference Center - Room 123

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation