In a society with a near-universal expectation of marriage, and where there are over 30 million more men than women under the age of 20, women in China face tremendous pressure to marry, stay married despite circumstances, and bear sons. Unmarried women who have reached the age of 27 are derogatorily referred to as “leftover women”. Despite the major contributions made by women to China’s development, women are often excluded from property ownership, subject to restrictions on their reproductive rights, and are actively discouraged from raising legal complaints when they are victims of domestic violence.
To help understand the challenges facing women in a country with almost 700 million women, we welcome award-winning journalist and author of Leftover Women: The Resurgence of Gender Inequality in China, Dr. Leta Hong Fincher. This episode explores the various challenges women face in China, the systemic factors perpetuating this gender inequality, and the historical context behind changing views of women in China.