China’s Union Organizers

Lin Binyu’s criteria would appear pretty straightforward as Chinese singles ads go, except that he’s on the prowl not for himself, but for his son. And he’s looking not in the newspaper or online, but at the local park, where every Sunday he can meet hundreds of other parents just as anxious to find spouses for wayward children who somehow made it to their mids without getting married. In China’s thriving big cities, young adults on the modern career track are getting married later and later, and these parents in Beijing aren’t putting up with it anymore – whether the children like it or not. The matchmaking is traditional Chinese society’s answer to the complications of the modern world, and it’s fitting that it should take place in a city park, where urban China’s retiring set seek daily refuge from the traffic and congestion of cities they would not recognize from their youth. On any of four days each week, parents go to one of three Beijing parks to play matchmaker, and the numbers are growing now that Chinese media outlets have spotlighted the months-old practice. The weekly Sunday gathering at Zhongshan is probably the largest, with close to 1, parents mingling on a recent Sunday afternoon. A number of parents are clearly hardened veterans, sitting with their thermoses of tea and waiting for all comers, often with computer printouts laid out in front of them detailing their children’s attributes.

A park for Mrs Bennet

Having hit upon enough discussions about marriage market on our social media feeds, the Elephant team that’s us, Biyi and Yan decided to visit Zhongshan Park on a Sunday afternoon, which, according to the internet, is currently the biggest, oldest marriage market of Beijing. We had so much curiosity, yet also a lot of anxiety and even fear! All these traditional common sayings, the things that today’s young Chinese no longer buy or even know much about, granted historical legitimacy to the parents who had come to, or are still coming to the marriage market for their kids.

Ever since first hearing about the matchmaking scene in Beijing’s Zhongshan Park, I’ve been dying to check it out. Parents come here on.

This copy is for your personal non-commercial use only. Right — or Ms. Right, as the case may be — for their unmarried children. Carrying short biographies of their sons and daughters, carefully written on small white placards, the parents arrive at 1 p. Tong is here for the same reason all the other parents are: their kids are putting in so many hours at work in the new, industrious China that few have time to find a mate on their own.

So, the parents have decided to do it for them. In many major cities across China parents gather in parks to swap information and arrange introductions. Here in China’s Olympic city, however, there’s trouble brewing. Filtering through the trees of this idyllic park, a tape-recorded female voice of officialdom rings out from loudspeakers. Due to the importance of its location

Two Girl’s Adventure into China’s Marriage Market

This undated photo shows senior citizens scan leaflets at the Temple of Heaven in Beijing’s Dongcheng district. Booths offering matchmaking services are propping up across several parks in Beijing, as parents of the unmarried continue to search nationwide for an ideal partner for their children. Young people should grab every opportunity to meet and connect with others in person to increase their chances of finding an ideal husband or wife.

Professor, Psychology Department, Peking University. At the Temple of Heaven in Beijing’s Dongcheng district, one can spot hundreds of greying men and women huddled behind two long rows of paper leaflets wrapped in plastic cases, listing the basic qualifications of their children. Hundreds more are seen moving along, skimming and scanning the leaflets.

Portrait shot in Beijing, China on March 31, her mother out to Zhongshan Park in central Beijing, where parents parade with pictures of.

Trump administration efforts are starting to mend a foster care system that has been in crisis for years. Along the cobbled sidewalks surrounding Zhongshan Park in Beijing, vendors hawk their wares: hand-squeezed orange juice, ice-cold water bottles, umbrellas to block the sun. Inside the park, which stretches along the moat of the Forbidden City, elderly men and women also set up shop. What do they proudly offer? On laminated pieces of paper, their children or grandchildren.

On one sticky Sunday afternoon, a tall young man cracking roasted watermelon seeds eyes an ad that includes a headshot of a cute something. When he says for himself, she launches into a barrage of interview questions. Do you have Beijing residency? Which school did you graduate from?

Foreigner seeks girlfriend for son at matchmaking corner in Beijing

Carefully lined up along pathways framed by high red walls and venerable cypresses, they are surprisingly subdued. Each of them — all adults of a certain age — stands behind a small piece of paper placed on the cement slabs. Several tap their feet to fight against the cutting cold of this winter afternoon. The pieces of paper small posters really are protected by laminated pockets and pinned to the ground by stones. They contain inscriptions, either printed or handwritten.

Feb 7, shanghai/beijing, matchmaker 父母之命 媒妁之言 to zhongshan park in china. Dec 23, sti networks and tiananmen square, matchmaking.

November 11 has gradually become China’s Singles‘ Day when those who are yet to find a partner make particular effort to meet a mate. But in the country’s more developed cities, where young people increasingly put making money ahead of finding love, worried parents are arranging dates for their single children whether it is Singles‘ Day or not. In Beijing, Zhongshan, Yuyuantan and Zizhuyuan parks are all busy venues for parents seeking mates for their offspring.

On one sultry summer’s afternoon this year, one father was sitting in Zhongshan Park holding a framed personal ad reading: “Male single, 35, handsome, height: 1. No German, no chance,” the mother replied, heading off to inspect the signs and information folders proffered by other hopeful parents nearby. Hundreds of anxious parents flood to the parks to explore the dating scene for their busy, picky, single children who, by traditional standards, should already have started a family. Lin set up a blind date for her daughter, who is approaching 30, after having visited the park twice.

Lin’s daughter met her prospective husband at a McDonald’s near her home. Things did not go well, and after half-an-hour the date was over. Her mother’s hopes of a blossoming romance lay shattered. Li Mingshun, executive director of the China Marriage and Family Society, attributes the phenomenon to children focussing on their careers and having less free time than a couple of decades ago.

One woman, who identified herself only as Tong, complained that her son hardly gets a chance to enjoy the money he earns because he is too busy working.

Matchmaking is just a walk in park

Traditionally, families had more say in regard to a marriage than the man and woman who were getting married. In the old days, young men and women that liked one another were not allowed to meet freely together. Young people who put their wishes for a mate above the wishes of their parents were considered immoral.

Matchmaking events are held in many cities, but many are only People read about potential spouses at a matchmaking event in Shijingshan, Beijing. Two parents swap their children’s information in Zhongshan Park in.

In ancient China most of people got married with the help of a matchmaker and the arrangements of their parents. The man’s side, led by the matchmaker, would visit the girl’s family to confirm each other’s stance. The step is called xiangqin to confirm attitudes. Nowadays, there are millions of single people in big cities like Shanghai and Beijing, so the traditional practice of xiangqin, with more than 1, years of history behind it, has made a comeback in modern Chinese life. Hundreds of parents of white-collar children gather together to choose suitable objects for their children’s marriage in parks such as Zhongshan Park, and Zi Zhu Yuan Park in Beijing, since the end of They bring information, including their child’s name, gender, profession and requirements of marriage, and play the role of matchmaker.

It naturally develops as a “meeting to choose the best person for their children’s marriage. Every Thursday and Sunday, a man named Zhang goes to Zhongshan Park to choose a suitable partner for his daughter. Now he is familiar with persons there. In fact, it is useless. Most of the children even do not see the pictures brought back by parents. Chen Tao, a year-old IT professional, thinks that it is his private business to find a mate.

It presents a different idea about marriage between two generations that the parents want to find a suitable person for their children to marry. Li Song, a year-old woman, works in a government department.

Wanted: Smart son-in-law

Jump to navigation. As younger Chinese became more independent – and reluctant to have their parents decide their love lives for them – the markets began to fade. It’s a hot summer Sunday morning, and Mrs Zhao is making herself comfortable on a hard wooden park bench. In a couple of hours, this quiet section of Zhongshan Park, a green oasis adjoining the Forbidden City in the heart of Beijing, will be noisier than a fish market. It is business that brings Mrs Zhao here, but it is a trade that is going to be far from straightforward.

Introducing the Beijing Military and Civilian Matchmaking Service, one of a In Zhongshan Park, off Tiananmen Square in the heart of Beijing.

The gateway to marital bliss in Beijing has a frosted glass door with two candy-apple red hearts and lots of computers. Introducing the Beijing Military and Civilian Matchmaking Service, one of a growing number of Chinese companies that are wedding high technology with low-tech tradition to spawn romantic unions. Bi Zhenxie, a year-old real estate agent who has never had a girlfriend, was on his first visit, filling out a form with his details and what he wants in a mate.

Now I’m beginning to consider having a family because I’m getting up there in years. The pressure is on. Romance and marriage have changed drastically in China after 25 years of breakneck economic growth and looser social controls. In a country now wide open to Western influences, even Valentine’s Day is making inroads, with chocolates, dinner dates, flowers and cards all becoming popular expressions of affection on the occasion.

For centuries, families relied on village matchmakers. Then came communist-era unions sanctioned — and sometimes arranged — by government companies for their employees. Everyone has the freedom to find their partner,” said Wang Peng, a divorced year-old who was making his first visit to the Beijing Military and Civilian Matchmaking Service. The first state-sponsored match-making agency was set up in in the southern city of Guangzhou.


Compared to parties, bars and nightclubs, in many countries parks are a site for family leisure and recreation and not a spot to find a date. It is not the case in China. Spouse-hunting fairs in big city parks organized by parents eager to see their children tie the knot have made parks in China a haven for relationship-hunters and their parents.

This conversation took place in a corner of Zhongshan Park at the center of Beijing, next door to the Forbidden City. Every day, groups of.

What time of day does the Marriage Market start in People’s Park? Somebody told me it is in the “afternoon” on Saturdays and Sundays. Is that correct? Also, where is it located in the park? I would like to see it while I am Shanghai. It s at the north end of the Peoples park inside gate 5of Peoples park,75 Nanjing xilu and if you take metro exit no9 at the People s park station. Hmm, did the hours change benny?

I recalled it as late afternoon to early evening. It is in the heavily forested area at the circular juncture of several pathways. Just follow the heavily traveled paved sidewalks.

Shanghai has mega matchmaking festival

Money or affection? Pu is not the only one who sees partner-seeking as an unbearable burden. Decades of rapid economic development has reshaped the landscape of marriage in China. Now, both society and parents put greater pressure on love birds seeking to build their own nest.

Impact of migration on average age at first marriage in Beijing. Population Research Matchmaking market in Zhongshan Park. Retrieved from.

Mawage, mawage, is what brings us together today. On a Sunday in Peking, we came across a curious crowd of retired citizenry at Zhongshan Park. Across the outer moat of the Forbidden City, four rows of parents, a few hundred in all, mingled beneath ancient trees above sheets of paper, on these written the basic personal details of their child to catch the eye of a future in-law passing bay. This is a true existential fear among many Chinese families to this day, especially for generations who lived through the era of One-Child Policy.

Just about every Spring Festival among my own relatives there is the inevitable conversation in which a meddling relation will bring up the questions of marriage, and while on the subject why not find a girlfriend in Shanghai. Despite having only spent one-year total of my life in Shanghai, a woman from the ancestral hometown of my Chinese-side would obviously be an ideal match.

Carrouf a Shanghai

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