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S Segal. Oxford University Press, New York, 2003, pp 242, £22.95. ISBN 0-19-515456-8
In retrospect the global demographic transition of the second half of the 20th century will probably be seen as the most important event of our time. Between 1950 and 2000 the life expectancy of people in developing countries rose from 40 to 60 years and the resulting explosive growth of population was constrained only by a decline in family …