china one child policy

Essay by totobeneHigh School, 12th gradeA, September 2014

download word file, 35 pages 0.0

000166-XXX 1

China's One-Child Policy: an Infringement

of Human Rights

Extended Essay: Human Rights

School: Seoul Foreign School


Candidate Code: 000166-XXX

May 2012

Word Count: 3,835

000166-XXX 2


On January 1st 1979, the Chinese communist government implemented a policy

of birth-control. This is referred to as the 'One-Child Policy' which limits each couple to

having just one child. The policy aimed at modernizing China by promoting social

reconstruction and economic prosperity. However it also implies and results in a sacrifice of

rights for the Chinese population who no longer have the freedom of choice regarding their

family planning.

This paper attempts to analyze and evaluate the question "To what extent can

China's one-child policy be seen as an infringement of human rights, and how can it be

justified?". This is done by considering both the cultural relativist theory and the Universalist

approach regarding the implementation of Human rights to understand the different

interpretations. Furthermore, and most importantly, focus is placed on the foundation and

execution of the policy, in regards to emphasize the notion that the right to family, life,

security and liberty is denied as a result of the policy. Although the Chinese government

claims that the policy is merely an advocated guideline which has gained mass support, the

reality is that consequences of not complying to the policy results in punishments such as

forced sterilization and abortions, or overwhelming fines. In addition, the consequences of the

policy are discussed including the inequality of the gender ratio, along with the development

of a hidden population, as these aspects trigger further infringements upon human rights.

Although the policy may be justified through an economic and political aspect,

it is a clear infringement of human rights and cannot be justified through a human rights

perspective, hence...