Next: Twenty or so
Suppose that a certain society values sons more than daughters. In
this society, a couple will continue bearing children until they
produce a son, at which point they will retire from the child-bearing
- Would this family-planning scheme tend to produce more
boys, or more girls?
- Using coin tosses, simulate the generation of twenty
families. Make histograms for the number of sons and the
number of daughters. Find the average and the standard
deviation of the number of sons and the number of
daughters. In light of this data, are you inclined to change
your answer to the previous question?
- If couples could magically determine the sex of their
offspring, what would happen? Would there be a sudden
increase in the number of boys, or girls? If so, would this
imbalance correct itself?
- If society were able to prevent the use of this magical
method, would it have the right to do so? If so, would it be
well-advised to do so?
- Read and discuss the editorial `Jack or Jill?' in The