Contrary to (mainly western) feminist paradigms, for Chinese women the advent of birth control is not automatically synonymous with “freedom”. Within the collective cultural memory, family planning holds the cultural weight of painful state control, as legislation to reduce family sizes in the early Maoist period was enforced through forceful means.
Xingping, China, July 2015 © ZhendeGender The 20 yuan (renminbi) image is the view from Xingping, China Xingping, China, July 2015 © ZhendeGender
When I first arrived in Beijing in September 2014, I knew almost nothing about the country I’d just moved to. I was embarking on a new life that didn’t seem to have a sell-by date – I had no idea how long I’d stay or even when I would next go home. While many of [...]
“You know it’s illegal to possess two passports as a Chinese citizen?” I saw her take out a large pair of scissors and decisively cut the corner off my Chinese passport. She then threw it back out at me. It landed before me on the counter, disfigured and invalid. Xiaolu Guo is a Chinese filmmaker [...]
They refuse to use femidoms because they are too big to swallow. In a raid, sex workers will swallow any condoms they have on their person, because condoms (used or unused) will be used as hard evidence by the police.
I was born in China. It is in China I must be reborn as a woman. Jin Xing was the first transgender person to undergo sex reassignment surgery in China with government approval, and the first whose sex change was officially recognized by the Chinese government. As a boy, Jin had an affinity for dancing and soon [...]
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Daj1qlw5qrI Reading this in China? View Narrate China on youku “It was a very peaceful place… and up ahead, we hear this blood curdling scream”. When he met a traveller on the way to Huangshan (Yellow Mountain), Tom accidentally got more than he bargained for. In this video, Tom thinks back on an old story from [...]
In China, the LGBTQ+ community face severe discrimination. Many LGBTQ+ people's families and communities refuse to accept their sexuality or gender identity, and therefore find themselves in compromising situations like 'fake' marriages to fulfil their filial duty. Homosexuality was considered a mental disorder until 2001, and some private Chinese clinics still offer 'electroshock' gay conversion therapy. [...]
I’ve vowed to myself that my body is my public, political sphere as well as my private, personal sphere. It’s my mannequin on which to display my beliefs, my vehicle in the fight for gender rights, my pathway to strength and to weakness. I’m not afraid to bare the truth to the world. What doesn’t help is feeling that the system is pitted against me because I speak a different language, because I am a foreigner, and because I am a woman.
Guest Post | Alexandra Sieh Looking up from my book, I scanned the crowded subway car, eager for some good people-watching. But as a new group of folks clambered on, I cringed at some of the actions and attitudes I saw. Boyfriends pushing (excuse me, “guiding”) their girlfriend onto the train, or speaking to them [...]