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Luis Garcia

GCU 114

Gender in China

Gender has always been a big issue in China. Since the beginning in its earliest governments
Chinese women were seen as pa form of property. It is said that women were seen as weak,
unintelligent, a person to serve mens needs, a person who puts herself last, care taker of the husband
and should be self-educated. Men on the other hand were strong, intelligent, leaders, wise, soldiers,
farmers, merchants, protectors of the weak and in charge of the government. As you can see there is a
tremendous difference between how we see the two.
According to Pan Chao there were four merits women must have in order to be a good woman.
These four were modesty, knowledge of when to speak, cleanliness and work ethic. It is said a Chinese
women had to obey three men in her life, the father, the husband and the son. But throughout time this
has been changing. A new proclamation by Mao made people realize women and men were not at all
that different. After this women started doing some things men traditionally only did. Some things
include piloting aircraft and participating in town affairs.
Then man has always been the strong gender when it comes to male and females. Throughout
time this has also changed. It is said that today more men in China do not care about aesthetics and big
muscles. Today most men think that the road to fertility lasts more in what they call face. This is how
they are perceived by other people and what they can do socially with their connections and there
influence. So as we can see men have gotten a bit used to not having to be real strong. But we do see
out of the two genders the males are still the stronger ones. Men are stronger due only to genetics of
So as we can see throughout time these roles have been changing. They have not completely
come to a point where both sides are equal. The men, due to the culture will always be the preferred
child of a Chinese couple. This because the want of an heir is real strong in China. There the children get
the last name of the father and the family continues. From what we can see though some statistics from
a census made in 2010 we see women at a work force of 74%. This rivals the percentage of other
countries like the United States.
In all women and men arent that different. We have learned this through time here in the US
and so has China. Which is why we have so many women in the workforce in China and why they take
some roles men used to take in their daily lives. But as we can see culture and custom is something very
hard to break. Whether one day the last name of the mother will be passed down to the child is still up
to debate. Now in time it is something that is only available for the father to do. So we see social
standing of these two genders did end up changing so that in some aspects they are equal, but we still
have a long way to go in order to get complete equality.

Fincher, L. (2013, May 20). Chinas Entrenched Gender Gap. The New York Times. Retrieved July
21, 2014, from http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/21/opinion/global/chinas-entrenched-gender-
The role of men and women in China. (n.d.). The role of men and women in China. Retrieved July 21,
2014, from http://www.chlive.org/LASCOLA/the_role_of_men_and_women_in_china.htm
Minrong, H. (n.d.). gender roles. Academic Dictionaries and Encyclopedias. Retrieved July 21, 2014,
from http://contemporary_chinese_culture.academic.ru/279/gender_roles