Robert Engelman


On his book More: Population, Nature, and What Women Want

Cover Interview of March 26, 2009

Editor’s note

Originally, this interview ran on the Rorotoko cover page under the headline

“Reproductive rights are the single most catalytic ingredient of environmental and social sustainability.”

We highlighted two quotes.

On the first page:

“Throughout history, when women have timed their pregnancies to suit their lives and their environment, populations have grown slowly or not at all.  When men control reproduction, by contrast, populations tend to grow unsustainably and sometimes catastrophically.”

On the second:

“How much more likely will our efforts be to move into balance with nature if we encourage an early end to population growth—and indeed live through a short period of gradual population decline?  And what other strategies are easily available that accomplish a long-term global good so powerfully by providing an immediate personal one: autonomy to give birth only when a woman and a partner are committed to raising a new human being to adulthood?”