Opinion / From the Press

Bachelors face deeper crisis

(China Daily) Updated: 2014-05-05 07:56

A village in Shaanxi province is known as a "bachelors' village" because about 40 percent of its residents are young unmarried men. This phenomenon, however, is not limited to the particular village because an increasing number of men, especially in poor areas, cannot find a life partner. Because of the worsening gender ratio, many sociologists fear a "bachelors' crisis", says an article in People's Daily. Excerpts:

The migration of a huge number of people from rural to urban areas - especially because more women than men choose to work in large cities - may be one of the reasons for the skewed sex ratio in some rural areas. In fact, many rural areas in China have a far higher number of adult males than females.

The unbalanced sex ratio at birth could also be blamed for the rising number of "leftover" men in villages. Demographic data show that China has had a skewed sex ratio since the 1980s, which has "created" more than 20 million "leftover" men.

But poverty is as much to blame as the skewed gender ratio for the "bachelors' villages". According to a survey conducted by Xi'an Jiaotong University, a large number of "leftover" men live in remote areas of western China, and the rising number of bachelors could lead to an increase in women-related crimes including trafficking.

The best way to correct the skewed sex ratio, therefore, is to accord women their rightful place in society and punish medical practitioners involved in illegal activities such as identifying the sex of fetuses. It is particularly important to make gender equality a part of village regulations in order to ensure that women enjoy the same right as men.

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