One solution…

Economics professor suggests wife-sharing to combat China’s bachelor surplus

(MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

Well, that’s one way to handle it. Xie Zuoshi, an economics professor at Zhejing University of Finance and Economics, has come under fire after suggesting in a blog post that polyandry — multiple husbands, one wife — may be a solution to China’s bachelor problem.

“With so many guanggun, women are in short supply and their value increases,” he wrote. “But that doesn’t mean the market can’t be adjusted. The guanggun problem is actually a problem of income. High-income men can find a woman because they can pay a higher price. What about low-income men? One solution is to have several take a wife together. That’s not just my weird idea. In some remote, poor places, brothers already marry the same woman, and they have a full and happy life,” Zuoshi said in the post, which has since been deleted.

Guanggun means bachelors, or “bare branches.” In a country wrought with gender imbalance due to birth control policies allowing only one child in a male-preferred society, China is estimated to have at least 30 million single men by 2020. In a response post released on Sunday, Zuoshi pushed back at his critics and claimed his ideal was based on the economic merit polyandry would pose. “If you can’t find a solution that doesn’t violate traditional morality, then why do you criticize me for violating traditional morality? You are in favor of a couple made up of one man, one woman. But your morality will lead to 30 million guanggun with no hope of finding a wife. Is that your so-called morality? Think of it like this: If you were a guanggun, would you still be in favor of one man, one woman?” he said.

Read the full story at The New York Times.

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