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Social Economic Development The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System.

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1 Social Economic Development The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

2  Snail House (Dwelling Narrowness) the most talked-about television programme in China in 2009 “mortgage slaves” ( 房 奴 ) The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

3  Marriage Concealers ( fake singles) popular drama in Beijing and Shanghai The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

4 "If post-80s guys can't afford houses, then post-80s girls could perhaps marry 40-year-old men instead. Once the post-80s guys can afford houses, then marrying 20-year- old girls when they hit 40 is not a bad idea at all." The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Liang Bei ( 梁蓓 ), Director of the International Real Estate Economy Research Center at the University of International Business and Economics

5 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

6 Background Chinese marriage is generally looked upon as an occasion for extending family. The whole process goes an elaborate marriage proposal and acceptance. Generally, middle man plays a great role in solemnizing the marriage. China was a man-dominated society. Man is superior to woman. Wifely virtues---the three obedience and the four virtues The three obediences: to father before marriage, to husband after marriage and to son after the death of husband The four virtues : morality, proper speech, modest manner and diligent needlework The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Marriage and Family System in Ancient China

7  The Parent's Order And Matchmaker's Words (父母之命,媒妁之言) The authority in a marriage choice rests with parents; the role of the matchmaker is as a source of information and advice, not authority. A matchmaker might be a friend or relative of the bride or groom or might be a professional or semi-professional person who made it his or her business to find mates for a fee. First wed, then love. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

8 ZHU Yingtai is a young girl from a rich family. She is disguised as a man in order to be able to study in the city. During her stay at school, she becomes friends and then secretly falls in love with her classmate LIANG Shanbo. Unfortunately, Zhu‘s father suddenly summons her back, saying that he has found her a rich and noble husband. Before her departure, Yingtai reveals her true identity to her headmaster’s wife and asks LIANG to propose marriage. LIANG hurries to Zhu‘s home and asks for her hand in marriage, but is rejected and thrown out. In despair, he falls ill and dies. ZHU is broken-hearted. On the day of her marriage, she decides to visit Shanbo's grave. Faithful to her love, ZHU leaps into a grave to join her beloved. ZHU and LIANG's spirits are turned into a pair of butterflies and emerge from the tomb, never to be apart again. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System The Romance of Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai

9  Polygyny (一夫多妻制) One husband having two or more wives at the same time. One wife and several concubines.  Doors Matching, Households Facing (门当户对) Two families should have approximate equality of social status. No marriage between different classes. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

10 Fang Xuanling was a famous prime minister in Zhengguan Period ( ) of the Tang Dynasty ( ). It was said that he was seriously henpecked by his wife. One day, the emperor gave Fang several beautiful girls as his concubines. But Fang knew that his wife would not permit that and politely refused. When the emperor got the reason, he sent someone to persuade Fang's wife with a bottle of "poisonous wine." If she permitted the marriage of Fang with the girls, she would be safe. If not, she should drink the "poisonous wine." Unexpectedly, Fang's wife drank the wine instead of permitting the marriage. But she did not die, for the "poisonous wine" was just a ruse; it was only vinegar. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Drinking Vinegar ( 吃醋)

11  Cement Old Ties by Marriage such as Marriage between Cousins (亲上加亲) In ancient China, first cousins with the same surnames (i.e. those born to the father's brothers) were not permitted to marry, while those with different surnames (i.e. maternal cousins and paternal cousins born to the father's sisters) were. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

12  Traditional marriage rituals Three letters The marriage is initiated by a series of three letters. The request letter is sent from the groom's family to the bride's family, and formally requests a marriage. The gift letter accompanies the gifts of the groom's family to the bride's family shortly before the wedding. The wedding letter is given on the day of the wedding, officially accepting the bride into the groom's family The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

13 Six etiquette Proposal: when a boy's parents intended to make a match, they would invite a matchmaker to propose with them at the girl's home. It was the custom that the first time matchmaker went as a guest they could not be served tea in order not to 'lighten the marriage'. If the proposal was successful, however, the matchmaker (usually a woman) would be rewarded with profuse gifts and feasts to show the two families' gratitude. Many unmarried young people could not see and were unfamiliar with each other till their wedding day. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Woman Matchmaker

14 Birthday Matching If the selected girl and her parents did not object to the proposal, the matchmaker would match the birthdates in which Suan Ming is used (Suan Ming is Chinese fortune-telling technique in which the foreteller could predict people’s future by only using either one’s date of birth including year, month, date, and time, or hand pattern. Ancient Chinese people believed that the date of birth determines your future; a good birth date could bring luck not only to his/her own self, but also to his/her family. Stereotype people still believe that is true) to predict the future of that couple-to-be. If the result of Suan Ming was good, they then would go to the next step. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

15 Presenting Betrothal Gifts At this point the bridegroom's family arranges for the matchmaker to present bride price (betrothal gifts), including the betrothal letter, to the bride's family. Presenting Wedding Gifts: This was the grandest etiquette of the whole process of engagement. Prolific gifts were presented again to the girl's family, symbolizing respect and kindness towards the girl's family as well as the capability of providing a good life for the girl. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

16 Selecting the wedding date The boy's family asked the fortune-teller to choose a date according to the astrological book when it would be proper and propitious to hold the wedding ceremony. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

17 Wedding Ceremony: The wedding ceremony began with the groom and his party meeting the bride in her home. Before this day the bride's dowry would have been sent to the boy's house. The dowry represented her social status and wealth, and would be displayed at the boy's house. The most common dowries included scissors like two butterflies never separating, rulers indicating acres of fields, and vases for peace and wealth. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

18  Divorce Chinese culture has long been pitched heavily against divorce. An ancient proverb tells newlyweds: "You're married until your hair turns white." In practice, however, divorce, while almost impossible for women to initiate, has traditionally been easy for men. All the husband had to do was send an emissary to his father-in-law to declare that he "cannot worship at the ancestral shrine with your daughter any longer." The father-in-law usually acquiesced, with apologies for not having brought his daughter up properly. In the old view, it was also shameful for women to marry more than once. Even if a bride's fiance died before the wedding, she could be forced to go through the ceremony with a wooden figure (or a symbolic rooster) and then spend the rest of her life single. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

19 The name Hua Mulan is a heroine in Chinese society and culture. Disney's 1998 animated film, "Mulan," brought her name to a wider audience. In the story, Mulan disguised herself as a man to take her elderly father's place in the army. She was later offered a government post by the emperor himself after her service was up. However, unwilling to commit anymore to the forces, she turned down the position so she could return to her family immediately. When her former colleagues visited her at home, they were shocked to see her dressed as a woman. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System HUA Mulan

20 At the age of 14, she was selected by the emperor to be sent into the palace as one of his concubines. Later when she waited on the emperor on his sick bed, she met with the crown prince, who fell in love with her because of her great beauty. As a rule, when the emperor died, she was sent to a nunnery to be a nun. As accordingly the crown prince became the emperor, he got her back into the palace and made her his concubine. She was an ambitious woman and wanted to be the empress. Through a series of struggles with the empress and another concubine, she succeeded in replacing the empress. Since the emperor was always sick, she helped him with the administration of the nation and so was the real ruler over the country. She gave birth to four sons and a daughter for the emperor, and when the emperor died and one of her sons was crowned to be the new emperor, she became the empress dowager, but still stayed in power. Then she wanted to be the sovereign empress and was crowned to be the sovereign empress, the first one, the last one, and the sole one, in the Chinese history. Her exciting story was made into movies in Chinese. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Empress WU Zetian ( )

21 Background Since 1949 China has promised women's equality. "Women hold up half the sky," Mao said. "Changes in the Chinese family were imposed quickly and radically," says Harvard University's Martin Whyte. "In most societies these changes would take generations. In Mao's China they were compressed into a time period, really, of two or three years. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Marriage and Family System in Modern China

22  Improvement of Female Social Status China's 1950 marriage laws, for example, made men and women, at least theoretically, equal. The law banned compulsory arranged marriages, concubinage, child betrothal and interference in the remarriage of widows. It reluctantly permitted divorce, but only when "mediation and counseling" had failed and the marriage clearly could not go on. Female almost have the same rights in education, career, marriage. etc. The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

23  Late marriage: especially for those who has better education Survey of Marriage Age in China(2007) CitymaleFemaleCityMalefemale Shanghai Xi’an Guangzhou Changsha Beijing Zhengzhou Kuming Nanjing Chengdu Shenyang

24 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System  Criteria for spouse choosing TimeCriteria for spouse choosing Enterprising person: soldier or model worker Family background and political status: worker, soldier, farmer Knowledge: bachelor, master Fortune and beauty 2000-NowDiversity and higher criteria

25 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System  How to meet your Mr. / Mrs. Right? One survey in Shanghai (%) ways Parents or relatives Colleagues Matchmaker Party organization Marriage agent By yourself others

26  Unwed woman in China ( 剩女) 3S lady: single, seventies, stuck "3s lady" means the woman who is old enough to marry but still single. Usually they have good education and well income. It is reported that there are more and more women becoming "3s ladies" especially in big cites like Beijing and Shanghai. What do you think of this phenomena? The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

27 Korea: My Name Is Kim Sam-sun Taiwan: My Queen

28 Unwed women boost the price of real estate? The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

29 New phenomenon: Lighting marriage: getting married as fast as a bolt of lightning. Network marriage: virtual marriage on website Trial marriage: live together without marriage Weekend marriage: for couples who work in far-off city from Monday to Friday Blind date The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

30 Blind Date Party : Worried parents Calm young person?

31  Wedding cost The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Apartment: 2,000,000 (80m 2 ) Interior home decoration and household appliances : 200,000 Car: 150,000 Jewelry and new clothes: 25 , 000 Wedding feasts: 60,000 Honeymoon trips:40,000 This sum of money, which is usually comes from their own savings, and from their parents and loans from relatives.

32  Divorce Rate one survey from UN in 2006: U.S.A : fear marriage, fear divorce more Korea: divorce rate ranks No.3 in the world India: divorce rate doubles within 10 years Brazil: girls like to pursue married men China: divorce rate increases quickly The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

33 lucky day and divorce : 37 couples divorced in 2009 in Hangzhou : 4 couples divorced by now in Hangzhou : ? The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System

34  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Gender Structure Age Structure

35  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Education Structure Marriage Structure

36  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Will you prepare for the first date: male female (1)well-prepare 48.9% 67.4% (2) not prepare intentional 43.6% 28.5% (3) not prepare 7.4% 4.1%

37  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System What do you do if the first date was not successful: male female (1)try your best to 45.2% 23.6% change the situation (2)have nothing to do with this situation 9.6 % 5.2% (3) give up 45.2% 71.2%

38  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Why are you still single: male female (1)high criteria 18.6% 25.8% (2)Well-conditioned 5.9% 6.7% (3) busy with work 34.6% 19.1% (4) fewer friends 51.1% 69.3% (5) not act positively 39.4% 46.8% (6) hurt before 30.3% 31.5% (7) unhappy marriage around you 4.3% 12.4% (8) don’t know how to communicate 35.1% 23.2%

39  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Your pressure comes from male female (1)Yourself 39.9% 31.8% (2) families 45.2% 47.2% (3) friends 6.9 % 7.5% (4) society 8.0% 13.5%

40  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Do you fear that you can not get married: male female (1)yes 8.1% 41.2% (2) no 91.9% 58.8%

41  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Why conceal marriage: male female (1)For career 42.9% 38.5% (2) privacy 35.1% 32% (3) attraction to the opposite sex 22% 29.5%

42  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Will you accept concealing marriage : male female (1)No 27.4% 44.7% (2)Reluctantly accept 7.1% 4.9% (3) maybe 65.5% 50.4%

43  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Whom do you think hold the purse string: male female (1)husband 19.6% 10.2% (2) wife 48.8% 60.2% (3) parents 1.2% 1.2% (4) AA 30.4% 28.3%

44  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Your criteria for spouse: male female (1)morality 84.9% 81.4% (2) temperament 67.4% 52.6% (3) appearance 43.6% 12.6% (4) family background 9.9% 15.8% (5) economic condition 5.2% 44.1% (6) education 17.4% 22.3% (7) ability 11% 42.5% (8) emotion 46.5% 23.9%

45  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Would you lower your criteria for spouse if you could not find the suitable person: male female (1)yes 18% 6.9% (2)maybe 48.8% 49% (3) off course not 33.1% 44.1%

46  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System About the elder spouse: male female (1)Younger than you 29.1% 0 (2)0-1 years older than you 15.7% 2.8% (3) 2-3years older than you 35.5% 10.5% (4) 4-5 years older than you 3.5% 32% (5) 6-10 years older than you 3.5% 36.8% (6)11-20 years older than you 0 3.6% (7) more than 20 years older than you 0 0.4% (8) age is not a problem 12.8% 13.8%

47  Chinese marriage and love report 2009 The Transition of Chinese Marriage and Family System Will you accept your spouse having higher education : male female (1)yes 77.3% 47.8% (2) Reluctantly accept 14% 27.5% (3) no 3.5% 11.3% (4) indefinitely 5.2% 13.4%


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