The gender class between the past and modern China - Essay Example

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Name: Subject:    Topic:   Date: The gender class between the past and modern China It has been noted that women have consistently had a hierarchical status lower than that of Chinese men. Traditionally, Chinese men used to enforce women to stay at home and obey all their instructions…
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The gender class between the past and modern China
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"The gender class between the past and modern China"

Download file to see previous pages In today`s world, Chinese women are given greater freedom and opportunities. They are allowed to live a normal life and make their own decisions but even today, the Chinese culture is in favor of men. No matter how much advanced and successful the economy is, men are still preferred more over women and are given greater opportunities. Historically, women were treated as mere creatures rather than members of the human community. The patriarchal structure of the Chinese culture gained a lot of importance during the years 960-1279 CE. During this period of the song dynasty, the gender differences in China reached to its maximum limit. The practice of foot-binding was introduced during this period and though not practiced today, this practice has left a number of foot prints (Gender issues in the Chinese culture, Web). Foot binding is a practice in which a girl`s feet are tightly bound to limit female mobility as well as to restrict the growth of girls. It was a totally inhumane practice which was thought to be started in Imperial China during the 10th or the 11th century. It started as a status symbol indicating a high social rank, but unfortunately spread through out China. Although it has been banned by the Chinese government, its effects can still be seen today as some of its victims are still found today. As a result of this practice, the women affected were not able to support their families by working in the fields and made them dependant. During the same period, women were forced to marry against their wishes and after marriage, had to comply with the wishes of her husband as well as her in laws (Traditions of foot binding in China, Web). Confucianism is the foundation of traditional Chinese system, created by Confucius who displayed gender discrimination by placing women at the lower end of a patriarchal domestic family system. This theory was supported by the initiation of the Neo-Confucianism which placed more restrictions of women. The teachings of Confucius were further strengthened by Ban Zhoa`s “Lesson for girls”. Apart from the practice of foot binding, female infanticide became quite common. The Chinese men only cared about their sons as they would carry forward the family name. The girls born in their family were treated as dirt and were either left to die or were even sold to rich families as mere objects and slaves. Families in China have favored sons over daughters in the past as well and this has increased the number of men in China today. There have been infinite cases of infanticide, better treatment of baby boys than baby girls and abandonment of new born baby girls. This increase in the number of Chinese men has been made possible by advances such as ultrasounds which make it possible to know the sex of the baby about to be born. This has been supported by factual evidence as the number of male births has increased from 108 in 1980s to 120 in 2000. This problem was worsened by the one child policy by the Chinese authorities and people were reluctant to give birth to baby girls as their only child. This increase in the number of men has been predicted to result in a rise in crime rates of sexual violence and other social crimes (China`s great gender crisis, Web). The problem of surplus of women has been felt by the Chinese authorities as they have made it a part of the country`s fie year plan to cut the ratio of the sex gap to 112 or 113 by ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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