Gendered Self-Improvement: Autonomous Personhood and the Marriage Predicament of Young Women in Urban China

  title={Gendered Self-Improvement: Autonomous Personhood and the Marriage Predicament of Young Women in Urban China},
  author={Gil Hizi},
  journal={The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology},
  pages={298 - 315}
  • Gil Hizi
  • Published 18 June 2018
  • Sociology
  • The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology
How does gender shape the experience and imaginaries of self-realisation? This article explores practices of self-improvement among young women in China, namely workshops for interpersonal skills. These practices direct participants to express themselves as autonomous persons, disembedded from social hierarchies and familial responsibilities. Unmarried women who attend workshops conceive of marriage as an unavoidable impediment to their self-realisation. This is due to a prevailing gender… 

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