Birth Control in Vietnam
The Government of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam has developed a strong family planning policy since 1963 to limit the population growth. The overall objective of the population policy and family planning is to encourage families to be small, and allow everyone to "be healthy, well fed, well clothed and happy." The quantitative objective is that "every family in society has one or two children, and each couple has two children by 2015, so that the population would be stable in the middle of the century".
Efforts for Social Development (promotion of women's education, health programs accessible to all, etc.) favored the evolution of reproductive behavior. Vietnam is a society that values traditional fertility. How may we realize family planning in such a society? In popular tradition, the woman must procreate as much as she can, and families do not have to restrict their offspring because of poverty, because they believe that God is responsible for sustaining all the children.
How can the duties of women to exercise their fertility coincide with the slogans of family planning programs that combine numerous offspring and poverty? In this document we will focus on the birth control policy in Vietnam by trying to get in touch with the country's values. An examination of the forms of family planning in this region will allow us to understand its implementation and its hazards.
The Red River Delta as the first government measures to promote family planning that has been implemented. Catherine Scornet studying the birth control policy in the region seeks to explain the reasons for this early success, from a field survey in two provinces, one in the province of Thai Binh in the lower delta, An Hiep and the other in the province of Hanoi, Ninh Hiep.
These two provinces are opposed demographically: while in the 1989 census the population was rural Thai Binh 95% (against 66% of that of the province of Hanoi), fertility is lower: 3 children per woman in Thai Binh in 1994 against 3.4 children per capita in the province of Hanoi. The author shows
that, in the Red River Delta, the mode of agricultural production (rice flooded) and the value system (ancestor worship) determined the choice of birth control policy and procedures for its implementation. The Vietnamese authorities have used the physical and economic elements, therefore (since the physical mode induced culture) to support and develop policies for birth control.
The Red River Delta is quite distinct from other regions in Vietnam by the high concentration of its population. In 1994, its density reached 1124 per km2, against 216 persons per km2 in average. The highlight is the strong opposition between the physical and demographic Red River Delta and the mountains in which it is embedded: the population is concentrated along the Red River and especially in the lower delta. Is the predominant because of infertility of the soil of the mountains? The only crop that can be performed continuously on the same land is irrigated rice.
Tags: Social Development, Government of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, Red River Delta, Vietnamese authorities