For this assignment, I looked on the website titled “Women of China”. This website contains information about current women’s issues and provides perspectives from Chinese women. The article I selected was an op-ed piece discussing why the lengthy school process was causing men and women to get married later in life. The author wrote of men older than 30 and women about 27 as being “leftovers” meaning they have surpassed marrying age. The author proposed to shorten the duration of primary and secondary school so that young adults could enter the work force earlier and met their spouse.
I found this article very interesting in comparison to the documentary we watched last week. The people in the documentary had an unquenchable desire to be successful and were willingly to give up every personal part of their life to achieve success. After seeing that documentary, I was impressed by the work ethic of young Chinese adults and have to wonder about this op-ed piece. This women’s piece is certainly interesting but it seems tied more to traditional Chinese values such as marriage and family than the modern Chinese adult.
Here is the link to the article: http://www.womenofchina.cn/html/womenofchina/report/168965-1.htm
After watching the beginning portion of the Frontline video, I was struct by a few aspects of the film.
Firstly, the part pertaining to the community and power lines interested me. The community’s well being was completely ignored as the party made their choice. This story resonated with me and reminded me of the Chavez Ravine incident in Los Angeles, California where an entire mexican american community was displaced by the state without any concern over the community’s residents.
Chapter 7 which focused on love relations seemed very similar but different to American love stories. The rapped who chatted online with a girl and then sent her money to come visit but never appeared was not surprising. This is the quintessential American idea of “catifishing”, which Mtv even has a series about. While I find internet chatting bizarre, I was interested to see how this type of relationship occurred in China.
The arranged marriages were a bit difficult for me to even comprehend where we live in a society that has the notion that a person marry’s for love. In China, it appears that people are more honest with themselves and the idea of marrying for money. In our American culture, that is an influential part of relationships yet we continue to operate on the fantasy of marriages purely of love.
This semester I have read a few articles on women and been alarmed by their living conditions. Once again, Frontline frightened me about women’s conditions. The extent of human trafficking is a terrifying reality in China. What saddened me the most was the young girl, who’s mother unknowingly was sold as a prostitute and the community did not want to welcome her back. I felt the daughter’s pain and could not even understand how the community did not recognize that the woman was being mistreated. Women lack a basic amount of human rights.
Overall, the cultural gaps between generations in China seems almost as if generations are living in opposite worlds.
In keeping with my China Digital Times article focused on womens’ modeling in China, I read an article from global voices focused on women’s feminist activits. One of the main activist is named Xiao Meili. This woman’s efforts are remarkable in trying to raise awareness about women’s inequality and empower women to feel safe. The article notes how many women are put at a severe risk of sexual abuse by just walking on the street alone. Meili is doing a walk from Beijing to Guangzho which is noted to be about 2,000 kilometers.
Meili’s efforts are remarkable but I was saddened to see that she seems to be the only major face of the cause. As I read last week in China Digital Times, female models endure horrible living conditions. After reading this most recent article, I keep feeling more and more unaware of Chinese womens’ information. In the United States, we have a plethora of women’s activism groups and are highly more cognizant of womens’ interests than China. I am curious and excited to keep following female news stories throughout the semester.
For Friday’s assignment, I explored The China Digital Times and found an incredibly interesting article about modeling life in China. The article discusses how girls come to China on vacation visas and are placed in crammed apartments with many other models. The girls are managed by “handlers” who dictate the girls actions and book them jobs. If a girl does not do a job, she is most likely sent home. Often, these girls are incredibly young and are the mercy of the older male models. Girls work very minimal modeling jobs such as posing in front of an expensive car for eight or nine hours a day. Also, girls are put on restrictive eating diets.
What really interests me about this article is that the modeling industry in China may be only a smidgen less glamorous the modeling industry in other parts of the world. Regardless of geographical location, young girls are being forced to starve to fulfill this body image ideal that has been set. To me, China’s modeling industry is another sad example of the poor influence that popular culture has had on every day individual lives’.
Here is the link to the article: http://sinosphere.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/01/14/a-dark-look-at-modeling-in-china/?_r=1
Image: David Gray for The New York Times
Figure 1. Laura Stewart. “Ocracoke Island Lighthouse.”2010. Digital Photograph. Available from Flickr, http://www.flickr.com/photos/42266040@N05/4827974643/(accessed January 14, 2014).
This picture is of the lighthouse located on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina. Ocracoke is a 12 mile island that is part of the Outer Banks. The island is the most southern part of the Outer Banks. Personally, Ocracoke is special to me because my mom’s family is from there. I have many family members who still live on the island. Along with my family history, I have worked at the local surf shop Ride the Wind for the past two summers and have come to love Ocracoke even more than before.
Figure 2. Unknown Photographer. “10.27.07 Jersey Cows.”2007. Digital Photo. Available from Flckr, http://www.flickr.com/photos/13065102@N00/1782290147/ (accessed January 14, 2014).
Growing up, I had dairy cows and was involved in 4-H. I showed my cows at local and state fairs. I enjoyed time on the farm and made lifelong friends through 4-H.
Figure 3. Steve Maciejewski. “Delicious Maryland Blue Crabs.” 2009. Digital Photo. Available from Flckr, http://www.flickr.com/photos/8585386@N06/3691920655 (accessed January 14, 2014).
I am from the Eastern Shore of Maryland and crabs are one of my favorite foods!
Figure 4. Margo.com. “Womens Lacrosse.” 2001. Digital Photo. Available from Flckr, http://www.flickr.com/photos/43622935@N04/4028711277 (accessed January 14, 2014).
I grew up in Maryland so naturally, lacrosse was the main sport. I began playing in first grade and have continued to play. I am a senior on the UMW team. Lacrosse has always been a large part of my life and something I truly enjoy.
Welcome to my blog! My name is Maggie Nunn and I am a senior at the University of Mary Washington. This blog is dedicated to University of Mary Washington’s History 466 course.