Cultural influences and how they negatively affect society

Different cultures have different social pressures. In america there is little to no pressure, any more, to have a lot of children. In India there is a high social pressure to have many children. The fact that India is a developing country is a large factor in why the pressure to have kids is the way it is. When you are living in a poor country like India the health care isnt as good as somewhere like the USA, you have babies knowing that there is a chance that one or more could die. When you have multiple children, once they grow up, they could help the family’s income by getting jobs. In the USA there isn’t as much of a need for raising one’s children with the idea that they could work for the family.

The crude birth rate in India in 2014 is currently 19.89 births/1,000 population, while the crude birth rate in the USA is lower at 13.42 births/1,000 population. In india there is an intense social pressure to have children and it has a negative impact on pollution, the economy, and the population size. It might sound like a brilliant idea to just tell the people in India to stop having so many kids, but it doesn’t quite work that way. The culture in India has been the way it is for years upon years. America used to be this way, in 1910 the birth rate was at 30.1/1,000 population. The birth rate was so high because back then a family would be better off bigger because the kids could help out on the farm or in the family business. This high birth rate declined as industrialization, and advances in society slowly grew.


“I did not want to have children now. I want to study.” said by Nineteen-year-old Kalawati Kumari is an important quote because it shows that people in India do want change. She was married into an arranged marriage, and had children when she didn’t want to. I think that the presence of people like Kumari in India will slowly begin to change the long standing culture into something similar to the birth culture in the USA. The change that went on in the USA went along with a change in economy, and a different way of thinking because of it. If the way of thinking that Kumari has could spread to many other Indian people I believe that the problem of overpopulation, caused by a high birth rate, would be diminished. If the overpopulation problem was solved then the economy problems in India would be easier to solve, the pollution problems in India would be easier to solve, and the culture of pushing people into marriages and to have children that they might not want would slowly start to fade.

5 thoughts on “Cultural influences and how they negatively affect society

  1. I thought that this post was very interesting. I liked how you connected the population size of India to their views on society. After doing research, I found that China and India have the highest populations, but the third most populated country is the world is United States and there is a huge gap between them. Furthermore, I think that another reason that India has such a huge population is because the women aren’t educated enough, which can lead to women not being independent and having to depend on a man. Women in India are also probably not educated enough to know that they have the option of taking birth control. In one of the videos we watched, it mentioned the fact that women in India generally don’t have a say on whether or not they want to have more children. The decision is made my the husband and the mother in-law. When the wife disobeys the families orders, the husband can sometimes turn to violence. Several women have been burned by their husbands in India. The following link really explains why India is the way that it is and a projection of their population.


  2. Liam I think you made accurate comparison between America and the United States. I think you could have taken your comparison to the next level and dove deeper into the reasons behind the CBR in both countries. If you were to elaborate on the CBR and the population situation in the US, I think that it would help the reader to understand your point of you more effectively. I also think that a visual that predicts the financial situation of India after the population rate drops would be effective in proving your point.

    I agree with your point though. I do believe that if the population in India was suppressed that the economic situation in India would increase and become better. I think that this will take a while but when this moment occurs I think that India will be extremely prosperous. They have several intelligent individuals and once they are given the opportunity to grow economically I believe that india will increase their financial situation and become a leading power in the world.


  3. Liam, I agree with your argument that there is pressure to have more children in India so that they can make money for the parents. Another reason is because there is a lot of pressure to have as many male children as possible. This means that women have to have children until they produce enough male offspring. Another important connection you mentioned was between the CBR of a country and how developed it is. Adding onto that, when a country is developing, the jobs available largely consist of labor or agricultural jobs. For both of these, more children are better, especially if it is a family business. I believe once India advances with their industries and economy, the pressure to have children will decrease, but this will take a long time because of the population momentum.


  4. Liam, I agree that the issue in India is important because population explosion can have horrible effects on a country like India, whose infrastructure is not as good as most developed countries especially in its rural areas. As we have seen in the video The People Paradox if India’s population growth does not become steady then the country could have 2-3 billion people by 2050. However, I do think that India’s Total Fertility Rate (TFR) will get to normal levels before because as you said the United States once had the same problem. Before industrialization in the United States, the quality of life was poor. Health care was not as common as it is today and not everyone had access to an education. However once the quality of life improved and more people lived longer lives with an education, birth rates began to fall. People then began to realize that there was not much need to have many children because less people were dying and more people were prioritizing education and finding a job above having children. This was at stage 2 of the population curve and after stage 2 the population growth rate began to go down to a sustainable level. I think that in the near future the same will happen in India because the quality of life is improving which will lead to what happened in the United States and other developed nations. There is however one problem that could affect the population curve of India and that is the sexist society. In India people usually have many kids in hope of having a boy. This is bad for the future of population growth for two reasons: one the ratio of boys to girls will be uneven which will lead to reproduction problems in the future, and women are being treated as second class citizens which will not help improve quality of life. In the video, it said that there are 35 million less females than males because of abortions because couples do not want girls in India which will lead to an uneven population which will lead to growth problems in the future. Also because women are being oppressed
    both emotionally and physically so that they can have boys they are not being educated and their quality of life is not improving. I
    remember that one day in class Mrs. Berndt said that scientists
    conducted a test in countries and discovered that one thing that helps slow down and regulate population growth is education for women. If women are manipulated to think their only purpose in life is to have male children, they will not aspire to do anything else with their lives. With an education women open themselves to more ideas and thoughts of what they can do with their lives. I think that if India can change its thoughts on gender inequality then the population growth can get to a sustainable level. Great post Liam, it’s really thought provoking!
    -Juan Alvarado


    • Just a quick edit – I didn’t say that there was ” a test” to determine if education of women decreased TFR but rather multiple research studies demonstrate this trend.


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