Here We Go Again: The Economist Commissions “Empty Crib” Research

September 1, 2016 • Daily Email Recap

The empty crib

ALTHOUGH he recently lost his job, T. R. Seshadri is a contented middle-aged man. He rides a Royal Enfield motorbike and plays badminton every day. Two years ago he acquired a small flat on the outskirts of Mumbai, which he plans to rent out. Most satisfying of all, Mr Sesadri and his wife have two children, a boy and a girl-“the perfect combination”, he says.
An only child does not learn to compromise, argues Mr Seshadri. A lone boy never has to wait for his sibling to leave the bathroom and never has to concede over which television programme to watch. But three children are too many in modern India. “If someone has a third child, people will think, what the hell is he doing?” he says. Some will scornfully ask: “Did you have two daughters first?” No-two is just right

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