Where are the Girls?

The New York Times has an article on polyandry in the Himalayas which is really fascinating.  There's just one little detail the author overlooks: what happened to the extra girls? One presumes that something did, but what? In polygamous societies, the extra men are surplus--they get kicked out, or killed in war, or they just spend long miserable lives wishing they could get their hands on a woman. But I doubt rural women were supporting themselves, so what happened to them? 

Darkly, I suspect that girls were killed--and that this doesn't get talked about because it spoils the happy feminist image. But that seems unduly paranoid.

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Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

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