ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Politics of Population at Cairo

winning out, evolutionary psychology has come into vogue (behaviourism is out), along with an interest in intelligence testing. However, this sociobielogical view of humankind fits into current political thought in a roundabout way. While Murray argues that 'biology is destiny' because IQ determines success in life, Wright's version is not that we are destined by our genes to be aggressive, promiscuous, or whatever, but that if we can learn what our 'real' human nature is, we can control it. Our 'natural' impulses (which lead to chaos) need to be curbed in order for society to survive. He says, "We are potentially moral animals... but we are not naturally moral animals. The first step to being moral-is to realise how thoroughly we aren't." Thus we come full circle via genes and abstruse sociobiological arguments to the 'Moral Majority" and the Republican THE International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) was held at Cairo, Egypt, in September. This is the third conference in a series of conferences that have been organised by United Nations Fund for Population (UNFPA) and held at an interval of 10 years. First conference was held in 1974 at Bucharest, Romania, and second in 1984, at Mexico City. However these conferences were preceded by two other conferences organised by the International Union for the Scientific Study of Population (IUSSP) with the assistance of UN. First of the IUSSP conferences was held in 1954 at Rome, Italy and second, at Belgrade in 1964. IUSSP conferences were essentially academic discussions on the subject areas under the theme of population. Interrelationships between socio-economic conditions and population were discussed as a part of academic interests. No discussions took place to manipulate population size. Politicisation of population issues: in the UNFPA-sponsored conferences is indicated by the fact that at Cairo IUSSP, an association of the professionals in the field of population and which participated as an NGO arranged a 'Contract with America'. The vision that these two tracts summon up is frightening - it is easy to imagine how, backed by the authority of science, the state can suppress and terrorise the poor By taking away their children, force them to work in low-wage, dead-end jobs, and deny them any opportunity to advance by labelling them genetically inferior. The hegemony of the few at the top is reinforced by economic and social policies, and the masses in the middle are controlled through laws that enforce conservative 'morality'. Conservatives rail about big government, but it seems that the state is about to become more powerful than ever. This evolving American ideology, its dissemination through pop psychology books and TV talk shows, and its connection with the new political agenda, need to be carefully followed and analysed by concerned thinkers and academics.

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