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Marriage and Family in China. Marriage Law of 1950. The very first law promulgated by the People’s Republic of China (1949 - ) abolished arranged marriage abolished polygamy right to divorce 214,000 cases of divorce in 1986 1,665,000 cases of divorce in 2004. Maoist era (1949 – 1976).

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marriage law of 1950
Marriage Law of 1950
  • The very first law promulgated by the People’s Republic of China (1949 - )
  • abolished arranged marriage
  • abolished polygamy
  • right to divorce
    • 214,000 cases of divorce in 1986
    • 1,665,000 cases of divorce in 2004
maoist era 1949 1976
Maoist era (1949 – 1976)
  • penetration of state into society
    • sweeping mass campaigns
maoist era 1949 19761
Maoist era (1949 – 1976)
  • transformation of “feudal” social customs
    • establish new loyalty to Mao and to CCP
socialist new man
“Socialist New Man”
  • communist ideals
  • socialist moral
  • culture and education
  • discipline
socialist new man1
“Socialist New Man”
  • “serve the people”
    • Lei Feng (1940 – 1962)
post mao era 1977 present
post-Mao era (1977 – present)
  • gradual retreat of the state from society and family
    • except in implementing family planning policy
  • change in values
    • materialism and individualism
    • Western influence
    • revival of traditions
family planning policy
family planning policy
  • “Family planning promotes economic development!”
family planning policy1
family planning policy
  • “It’s good to have only one child!”
family planning policy2
family planning policy
  • “It’s a basic state policy!”
family planning policy3
family planning policy
  • “Girls are as good as boys!”
a 1999 survey of rural youth
A 1999 survey of rural youth
  • 3 factors in choosing a spouse:
  • congenial to each other (49.8%)
  • smart and capable (49.2%)
  • education level (37.9%)
  • gentle and considerate (32.9%)
  • honest and reliable (28.6%)
  • health (28%)
a survey in nanjing in 2006
A survey in Nanjing in 2006
  • When choosing a spouse do you consider whether s/he has housing? (83% “yes”)
  • Who should provide the housing?
    • both 55%; husband 44%; wife 1%
  • 18% would marry even without housing
  • What role do your parents play?
    • parents will decide 4%
where did lei feng go
“Where did Lei Feng go?”
  • “serve the people?”
  • results from surveys on university campuses
a survey of urban youth in 1998
a survey of urban youth in 1998
  • Which region’s music do you like most?
  • Hong Kong 63.5%
  • mainland China 60.8%
  • U.S.A. 36.9%
  • Taiwan 29.0%
  • Japan 19.5%
  • India 12.8%
a survey of urban youth in 19981
a survey of urban youth in 1998
  • Which region’s movies and TV programs do you like most?
  • Hong Kong 71.7%
  • U.S.A. 62.4%
  • mainland China 41.0%
  • Taiwan 19.9%
  • Japan 19.7%
rise of the individual
rise of the individual
  • pre-Mao era
    • loyalty to family, father, and ancestors
  • Maoist era
    • new loyalty to socialist collectives
    • new loyalty to the Party and Mao
  • post-Mao era
    • state loosens control of private life