Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men

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9781586488505: Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men
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"Provocative, wide-ranging.... A thoughtful, smartly researched overview of medical developments, policymaking and cultural trends that combined to upset the global sex ratio." The Daily Beast, Eleanor Clift, June 22, 2011"[Hvistendahl] approaches these sensitive subjects without an ideological ax to grind, whether pro-life or pro-population control, documenting how sex selection has taken hold thanks to technology, lower birth rates, and deep-seated cultural biases that require a boy to carry on a family's lineage."New York Times, Ross Douthat, June 26, 2011 "Unnatural Selection reads like a great historical detective story, and it's written with the sense of moral urgency that usually accompanies the revelation of some kind of enormous crime."Marcy Darnovsky "Ms. Blog," June 7, 2011"An important contribution, disturbing but gripping, and challenging to all of us, perhaps especially to U.S. advocates of reproductive justice. It provides both a deep understanding of the staggering dimensions and consequences of sex selection, and an urgent prod to confront it."

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Lianyungang, a booming port city, has Chinas most extreme gender ratio for children under four: 163 boys for every 100 girls. These numbers dont seem terribly grim, but in ten years, the skewed sex ratio will pose a colossal challenge. By the time those children reach adulthood, their generation will have twenty-four million more men than women. The prognosis for Chinas neighbors is no less bleak: Asia now has 163 million females missing from its population. Gender imbalance reaches far beyond Asia, affecting Georgia, Eastern Europe, and cities in the U. S. where there are significant immigrant populations. The world, therefore, is becoming increasingly male, and this mismatch is likely to create profound social upheaval. Historically, eras in which there have been an excess of men have produced periods of violent conflict and instability. Mara Hvistendahl has written a stunning, impeccably-researched book that does not flinch from examining not only the consequences of the misbegotten policies of sex selection but Western complicity with them.

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