Wednesday Gender Seminar: Email Order Brides under China’s Global Rise


14 Oct 2020


12:30 - 2:00pm


Online Zoom Seminar

Prof. LIU Monica (Assistant Professor, Department of Justice and Society Studies, University of St. Thomas)
Biography of Speaker:

Monica Liu received her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California - San Diego and she is currently Assistant Professor of Justice and Society Studies at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota. Her work examines global internet dating and cross-border marriages between women from China and men from Western countries. Currently, she is finishing her book titled “Email-Order Brides under China's Global Rise.” Her work has been published in Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, Men and Masculinities, and Qualitative Sociology.


Tel: 3943-1026 Email: Website:

Event Details:

Co-presented by: Gender Studies Programme and Gender Research Centre , The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Synopsis of Lecture:

My work explores the life histories and decision-making processes of Chinese women who seek marriages with Western men. The majority of the women in my study is middle-aged (above 40), divorced, and come from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds. I explore how emerging inequalities brought on by China’s transition from state socialism toward a global market economy shaped their shared desires to seek out-migration via marriage. My work is set against the backdrop of China’s economic ascendance on the world stage alongside a relative decline of the West. I compare how Chinese women from diverse class backgrounds envision a relatively homogenous group of men: Western men in agriculture, manufacturing, and small business sectors who feel they have been left behind by globalization. Through analyzing modest-earning Western men’s declining ability to marry middle and upper-middle class Chinese women, my work sheds light on China’s changing relationship with the global north. I show that a new global hierarchy of masculinity based on economic distinction has emerged, and this new hierarchy challenges Western men’s privilege in China previously associated with their racial, ethnic, and geopolitical status.


Language: English