Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Social developments in the Indian countryside are not benefiting daughters

18.03.2009
There have been great economic and social advances in India in recent years. Despite this, millions of girl foetuses are aborted because they are the "wrong sex".

Daughters are not rejected simply due to old traditions, but also because the changes in society do not leave any room for girls, says Mattias Larsen who is presenting his thesis at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

According to culturally conditioned conceptions it is necessary to have sons, above all to provide care in old age. In combination with the major social changes, this leads to girls being rejected, says Mattias Larsen, who has researched the problem in the northern state of Himachal Pradesh.

Earlier research has shown abortions of unwanted daughters in India to be a problem that has emerged in recent years - despite tangible economic and social progress. Traditionally sons in India have had the responsibility of taking care of their parents when they get old.

This" contract" between the generations is a fundamental social institution in India. It binds generations together and shapes large parts of the social life, says Mattias Larsen.

Sons guarantee a secure old age

However, in line with economic developments, increasing numbers of young men are leaving agriculture behind in the countryside and migrating to cities that are undergoing rapid economic development. And this is also causing an important part of the traditional social safety net to break up. To guarantee their security in old age it is even more important for parents to have a son who they know will take care of them.

Most of the new economic opportunities outside agriculture are benefiting young men who are becoming more and more independent, thus leading to the traditional agreement becoming increasingly untenable. Paradoxically, in order to salvage the only available option for provision of care in old age, parents are compelled to concentrate more on their sons and to reject daughters, says Mattias Larsen.

The rapid economic development has also led to many instances in the countryside of greater demands for dowries and financial contributions in conjunction with marriage, reinforcing the view of daughters as a burden.

Even though there has been rapid economic development with increased prosperity within agriculture, opportunities for self determination for women have not advanced. This has led to dowry problems in villages were it was not previously a problem, says Mattias Larsen.

The thesis is based on research in the state of Himachal Pradesh in northern India. Mattias Larsen has compared eight villages through 55 interviews, 8 group discussions and a questionnaire consisting of 477 households.

Title of the thesis: Vulnerable Daughters in Times of Change: Emerging Contexts of Discrimination in Himachal Pradesh, India

E-link: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/19119

Author of the thesis: Mattias Larsen, tel: +43 6764903038,
e-mail:.mattias.larsen@globalstudies.gu.se
Name of faculty opponent: Professor Ravinder Kaur, IIT Delhi, India
Time and venue for the public defence: Friday 13 March 2009 at 13.15, Lecture theatre 220, Annedalsseminariet

Campus Linné, Seminariegatan 1, Gothenburg, Sweden

BY: Lena Olson
lena.olson@samfak.gu.se
+46 31-786 4841

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://www.gu.se
http://hdl.handle.net/2077/19119

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Amazingly flexible: Learning to read in your thirties profoundly transforms the brain
26.05.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften

nachricht Fixating on faces
26.01.2017 | California Institute of Technology

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA looks to solar eclipse to help understand Earth's energy system

21.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

Stanford researchers develop a new type of soft, growing robot

21.07.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Vortex photons from electrons in circular motion

21.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>