Society

This file photo taken on 2 August 2022 shows a woman pushing a trolley with twins along a street in Beijing, China. (Noel Celis/AFP)

China's 'little emperors' of the 1980s are now the most burdened generation

China has more than 170 million sandwich-generation families. While the sandwich generation grew up in the 80s as "little emperors", they are feeling the strain now with the double pressure of looking after their children and the elderly. Most of them focus on "children first", but if a married couple’s parents live in two different cities, that makes it even harder to care for all four parents at the same time.
People line up to be tested for Covid-19 next to a poster showing China's President Xi Jinping on a bulletin board in Beijing, China, on 31 August 2022. (Jade Gao/AFP)

China censors discussion on WHO's assessment of pandemic

Despite state media dispelling the misunderstanding that China’s zero-Covid policy would become a long-lasting basic national policy, Zaobao correspondent Wong Siew Fong notes that the Chinese people are still wary of how much longer the strict measures will persist, especially amid the sudden censorship of specific search terms related to the end of the pandemic on social media. Is there an end in sight for the strict anti-epidemic measures?
In this file photo taken on 13 October 1986, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II reviews an honour guard after being greeted by Chinese President Li Xiannian in Beijing, China. (Walter Landholt/AFP)

Queen Elizabeth II: The British monarch who reigned longer than Emperor Kangxi

Queen Elizabeth II was not only an ever-present figure in British modern history, she also played an important role in diplomacy. Over her 70-year reign, she has met with Chinese leaders since the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949 and witnessed the handover of Hong Kong. Lianhe Zaobao’s China Desk takes a look at the late Queen’s relationship with China.
Sensing that I'm drawn to such content, Douyin’s algorithm recommended more stories of Chinese families that tug at the heartstrings. (Screenshots provided by Jessie Tan)

Singaporean in China: China's poor no longer beg, they livestream

Former journalist Jessie Tan muses over the phenomenon of those in need transitioning from begging on the streets to selling goods on Douyin. While the poor or disabled have been given a more dignified and effective source of income, this is just one aspect of the good that comes with social media and technology.
A view of Santikhiri village, a KMT Chinese village, in Mae Salong, Chiang Rai, Northern Thailand. (iStock)

From pro-Taipei to pro-Beijing: Are KMT Chinese in Thailand switching their allegiance?

Because of China’s soft power, some Yunnanese Chinese in Northern Thailand — known as KMT Chinese and who are descendants of KMT supporters who left Yunnan and eventually settled in Northern Thailand — have gradually shifted from being pro-Taipei to being pro-Beijing. Out of the 110 private tutoring Yunnanese schools in Northern Thailand for instance, more than 40 have begun to accept Beijing’s support and modelled their school structure in accordance with PRC’s guidance. How many more converts can China's soft power yield?
Housing flats in Sai Wan, Hong Kong, 5 September 2022. (CNS)

Hong Kong's property prices are falling. Will it continue?

Zaobao journalist Tai Hing Shing looks at the recent drop in Hong Kong’s property prices and asks: will the Hong Kong government take any measures to make sure the market remains stable, or allow the market to regulate itself?
A still from the movie Return to Dust, with Wu Renlin (left) and Hai Qing in the lead roles. (Internet)

Can China's movies depict poverty and the ugliness of society?

The movie Return to Dust depicts the difficult circumstances of a rural couple in China. Despite the high ratings and box office takings, some detractors say that the film feeds Western stereotypes of rural Chinese. Zaobao correspondent Yu Zeyuan looks at whether the movie panders to Western tastes, and whether it invalidates China’s efforts at poverty alleviation.
People wearing face masks pass by a portrait of Chinese President Xi Jinping, following the Covid-19 outbreak in Shanghai, China, 31 August 2022. (Aly Song/Reuters)

China's exorbitant cost of zero-Covid

Covid-19 prevention and control has normalised in Shanghai, but the economic costs are still being felt across the country. China has continually implemented new measures to balance pandemic control efforts and stimulate the struggling economy, but is it enough? Chen Jing, Zaobao correspondent based in Shanghai, tells us more.
A view of the exterior of the north complex of the National Library of China, 2009. (Wikimedia)

The lack of public libraries in China is not a funding issue

Despite China’s strong cultural history and traditions, its efforts towards promoting reading and building public libraries remain wanting. Researcher Chen Hongbin presents some surprising statistics on the severe shortage of libraries in China, and looks into the contributing factors and possible solutions.