During the past two decades, considerable debate has taken place, particularly in India, on the imbalance in gender ratio and the question of 'missing women.' However, the recent discourses in India have changed the focus from 'missing women' to 'missing girls,' highlighting the precarious situation of female children before birth, at birth, and during childhood. Fetuses have been aborted on a massive scale in recent decades simply because of gender. This raises many questions: Why are female children still at risk despite the progress in female literacy and the growing participation of women in economic and political activities? Is there a significant shift from perceived 'son preference' to deliberate 'daughter discrimination' at the household level? Are the advances in reproductive technologies helping couples to achieve the preferred family size and the desired gender of children? Is there a growing realization that daughters are rarely able to 'substitute' for sons, resulting in an intensification of gender bias even among the better-off sections of the Indian society? In order to answer these questions, it is necessary to understand the nexus of economic, social, and cultural factors that underlie daughter discrimination. Based on extensive research, the essays in this book - by sociologists, demographers, economists, and gender specialists - provide a multidisciplinary perspective to the varied facets of increasing gender bias in contemporary India. The contributing scholars emphasize the need for a change in the attitudes of society towards girls as a lasting solution to this social epidemic.
Publication Date: 6/1/2010
Temporarily out of stock