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A Mother's Ordeal, by Steven W. Mosher

- Abstract

Of all the world’s languages, few can be more vividly informed by images of home and family than Chinese. The character for “good,” for example, is a son and a daughter. “Safe” or “secure” is rendered as a woman with a roof over her head. A woman who is pregnant will commonly describe her condition as “having happiness.”

Originally even Chairman Mao subscribed to the view that the more Chinese, the merrier, and rejoiced in the muscle of China’s millions. But later he changed his mind. In one of those swings of the pendulum that have wreaked such damage on the Chinese people over the centuries, party officials in the 1970′s launched what has become the most ruthless population-control program in history, the so-called one-child policy. As usual, the masses lagged behind the vanguard, and measures to ensure their conformity became progressively severe.



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