By Tom Bannister
The results of an online survey looking at the concerns and fears of Chinese people has revealed large gender differences. The Baidu-conducted survey was called ‘What do Chinese people fear’ (中国人怕什么) and supposedly received some 20 million responses. Questions were asked about all aspects of life and results indicated that whilst women most worried about appearances and getting older, men cared more about money and careers. Physically men most worried about going bald, getting a beer belly and impotence. Women most worried about getting wrinkled, their breasts sagging and their waist expanding. Women also worried more about relationships: those who were married worried about their husband having an affair; those who were unmarried worried about not finding a husband. In contrast men mainly worried about their careers, having enough money, and losing face. Xinhua quoted the responses of several academics:
Zhang Zhi’an, a professor in new media analysis with Sun Yat-sen University, said the lists show the anxiety many young Chinese are experiencing.
“Most young people are in the lower levels of society, and the lists reflect their anxiety over a society full of fierce competition,” said Zhang.
Wang Kaiyu, a famous sociologist in Anhui, said the survey results also show the dry sense of humor young people take on when talking about what they really want.Wang said the concerns are all related to daily life, and the survey should have been called “the most wanted list,” instead.
“Through the survey, we can see that Chinese young people just want a happy family and to live with dignity. It has always been their dream, as well as a target for the government.”