Chapter 7 turns to the social policies and programmes through which Bangladesh started to transform its population after the famine, making them safer, healthier, and in general better equipped to lift themselves out of poverty. The famine had demonstrated above all that the Bangladeshi state lacked biopower, or the power to influence the life chances of its population. Human development became an urgent priority, in particular fertility control, and this imperative strengthened the new focus on women. This chapter examines how public policy, aid, and NGO programmes went about the experimental approaches to population, child survival, and basic education for which Bangladesh has become well known.
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