A Chinese lecturer on “traditional values” has issued a non-apology for a controversial lecture she delivered earlier this month in which she told her audience that “being a virgin is the best dowry that a woman can give her husband.”
Slides from the May 14th lecture on “traditional female values in the modern era” given by 63-year-old Ding Xuan at Jiangxi province’s Jiujiang University leaked onto Weibo last week and quickly went viral, becoming one of the social media network’s top trending topics — currently with over 34,000 comments.
Along with sharing her views on the importance of chastity, Ding also warned women against wearing revealing clothing, saying that it could lead to sexual assault or rape, and cautioned them against getting married without the help of a matchmaker, at the risk of bringing bad luck to her family and ancestors.
On Monday, Ding looked to clarify her comments in an interview with Beijing Time in which she “apologized” if her words came out wrong, adding that they were taken out of context. Yet, in the interview Ding continued to hold firm to her beliefs on how to be a proper woman, explaining that it was what she was taught by her grandmother and mother, and what she has passed down to her own daughter.
Ding claimed that what she said to the women in the audience about the importance of remaining chaste was not sexist, but was instead simply “for their own good,” particularly considering the way that some of them were dressed.
“Many of the audience members got a lot out of it. Some of them wept and said they had been wrong,” SCMP quotes Ding as saying. “This is something that must be said — reminding women to remain chaste in order to guarantee blessings for their marriage… Women should not sleep around. Today they’re with one man and tomorrow with another – who will still want them?”
Ding’s “apology” has only led to more condemnation and ridicule online with netizens telling her to get on a time machine back to the Qing dynasty where her antiquated ideas about women would be more readily accepted by a society that practiced foot-binding.
“No matter what, both men and women should be respected. Her remarks have already been returned to feudal times,” wrote one Weibo user. “Please don’t make virtue about vagina,” added another.
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