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“Even Worse Than Before”: Japan’s Fertility Crisis

Preliminary government data suggests that Japan’s fertility crisis is worsening, as the data from the first seven months of this year shows the sharpest drop in births in 30 years.

Data from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare show that births fell 5.9% percent from January to July year on year, and the number of women in their childbearing age are shrinking, not to mention the increasing number of women who decide to delay having children, or decide not to have any children at all.

During this period, the total number of births was 518,590. For the whole of 2018, the official tally of births was 918,397, a figure which however excludes babies born to foreigners in Japan and Japanese babies born abroad.
The decline in births is "happening faster than official projections had envisioned," said Yasushi Mineshima, a spokesman for the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research.
Japan's birth rate has been falling since the late 1970s. In 2005, it reached a record low of 1.26, but then seemed to be on a path of recovery until it started to fall again in 2016, according to government figures. By 2018, it was at 1.42.
To maintain a stable population, countries need a fertility rate of 2.1. Last year, it was 1.72 in the United States but only 0.98 -- or less than one baby per woman -- in South Korea, where fertility rates have fallen to their lowest level since records began.

More details of this news over at CNN.

How do you think can this be solved?

(Image Credit: DanEvans/ Pixabay)


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I agree that women everywhere (as a rule) have fewer children as they grow more educated (however the biggest difference happens between zero education and a high school degree, with a smaller jump between a high school degree and a college degree) -- but, if you look into Asian cultures, the issue of male chauvinism does play a fairly important role in that decision. In other words, it's not because of feminism that the problem has arisen, it's because traditional attitudes in men (and societal expectations on women) have, as a rule, failed to adjust to that change. (There are always exceptions, of course.) Basically, Asian countries are at the stage of the 1970s in the US, where the infamous Enjoli commercial sums up the expectations for a working woman/mother https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_kzJ-f5C9U -- and it's nearly impossible to have more than two children in those conditions.
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I'm going to disagree with you on this.

In general, as women get better educated and gain equal rights in society and the workplace, they (1) gain the choice as to whether or not to have children, and (2) realize they actually have a choice. And many choose to have fewer children. They become people, and not just baby factories.

The decrease in the Japanese birth rate is the RESULT of their feminist movement, not because of a lack of it. Women are no longer "repositories of men's bodily fluids" (as they describe it in the article you linked) and they use their newfound agency to have less children.

Here is some support for what I'm saying:

Education and Fertility Rate:
https://blogs.worldbank.org/health/female-education-and-childbearing-closer-look-data

Gender Equality and Fertility Rate (no U-shaped curve):
https://ifstudies.org/blog/more-gender-equality-lower-fertility
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