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The Transition of Chinese Families over the Past Thirty Years (1978–2010)

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Chapter Summary

This chapter analyses changes in China's socialist society over the past thirty years and proceeds to discuss changes in Chinese families. Since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949 China has developed socialism as its national institution, through strenuous political, economic, and ideological effort. Socialism went astray in the period of the Cultural Revolution (1966-76), encountering unprecedented political, economic, and ideological threats. The chapter examines changes to marital status in Chinese society over the past thirty years. Dramatic changes over the past thirty years have occurred not only in statistical figures on the population, families, and marriages, but also in the perception of gender and families. The chapter discusses the changes in the perception of gender roles in the family as well as 'Materfamilias' in China. It finally discusses the ideological changes concerning marriage and family in Chinese society.

Keywords: China's socialist society; cultural revolution; dramatic changes; marital status; materfamilias; national institution; socialism



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