Terming China’s “one child policy as tragic”, Pulitzer prize-winning Malaysian writer Mei Fong on Thursday said the controversial decision destroyed the family structure in the Communist country and gave rise to a “lost” and “lonely” generation.
Fong was speaking at a session at the ongoing Jaipur Literature Festival on her book titled “One Child: The Past And Future Of China’s Most Radical Experiment”, that talks about the consequences of China’s controversial decision to restrict its population size.
She said that despite her best efforts to get her book published in Chinese, she failed in her attempt as books critical of the country have disappeared from book shelves not only in mainland China, but also in Hong Kong.
“I didn’t get published. Something bizarre happened in 2005 in Hong Kong. Books which are critical of China have now disappeared completely.
“It is sad that people to whom this tragic policy (one child) concerns cannot read the book. A book about China cannot be read by Chinese people. So, I published it online,” she said.
Fong had concealed her intentions to offer the book free online until the last minute.
The policy was abolished last year in favour of a two-child policy but not before contributing greatly to China’s gender gap along with some human rights abuses such as forced abortions and sterilizations.
Dismissing the general belief that the decision contributed to China’s double digit economic growth, Fong said it was wrong to link the two.
She said the economic turnaround was a result of the encouragement of entrepreneurship and removing of bottle necks by the Communist regime.
The former Wall Street Journal scribe, who won the Pulitzer in 2007 reporting on the adverse impact of China’s booming capitalism on conditions ranging from inequality to pollution, lamented the dearth of women in the corridors of power in China.
“There are women behind decision-making as business executives, but there are not enough women in power,” she said.