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China is famous for her people as well as other things. She has a population of over 1.3 billion, which means that among about every 5 people in the planet earth, there is one Chinese person.
However, due to China's topography and climate, over 90 percent of the Chinese population lives on less than 40 percent of the land.
How Did China End Up With Such A Massive Population?
China has been a country that emphasizes family importance. Large families have been a common phenomenon through her history. From the early 19th century to 1949, China had experienced years of wars, foreign occupation and civil unrest that depleted her work force. Immediately after the establishment of Chinese communist rule in 1949, the government encouraged its people once again to have large families.
One Child Policy
However, while the population increased successfully, the production and modernization could not keep up with the population growth, which forced the government to make a policy change in the late 1970s. The policy is actually an extensive birth control program that has been strictly enforced. It has cost much personal pains and received many critics from human-right activists. This program is normally referred to as the "One Child Policy".
There are 56 ethnic groups officially recorded in China. Han is the majority, which makes up 95% of China's populations. When we refer to Chinese culture, it mainly means Chinese Han culture.
Picture at left: A Yi girl.