Society

Based on the photo in this marriage certificate, the appearance and age of the woman the authorities initially identified as 'surnamed Yang' did not match the footage of the chained woman circulated online. (Weibo)

‘The world has abandoned me’: Chinese women married into slavery?

Chinese academic Lorna Wei says that the authorities’ determination to root out human trafficking may waver, but netizens’ voices speaking up for the victims — often women married off into other counties — will not be silenced. This may be the only comfort that countless women suffering alone can take solace in.
Livestreamer Huang Wei, known professionally as Viya, sits behind a ring light during a special livestreaming event arranged by Qianxun Group in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, on 30 April 2020. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

200 million Chinese are in flexible employment. Is this their choice?

As the impact of the pandemic persists, some 200 million people are choosing flexible employment, which gives them greater freedom in terms of work hours, work location and income. While the media is eager to highlight success stories of those in glamorous jobs such as livestreaming, in reality, companies are hiring general workers for odd jobs instead. How far do the statistics reflect the actual situation?
People walk through wet streets after a morning snow storm in Manhattan on 7 January 2022 in New York City, US. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP)

Why the Americans know China better than the Chinese know the US

The belief that the Chinese know far more about America than Americans know about China is a misconception. In the age of globalisation and the internet, a knowledge asymmetry actually exists between the Chinese and the Americans — middle class Americans seem to have an understanding of Chinese culture, history and system based on rigorous academic research and analysis, but the Chinese lack the same level of understanding of the Americans. US academic Wu Guo shares his views on why the “knowledge deficit” exists in China.
Performers during the closing ceremony of the 2022 Beijing Olympics, National Stadium, Beijing, China, 20 February 2022. (Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters)

Why China is the biggest winner of the 2022 Winter Olympics

Zaobao correspondent Yu Zeyuan feels that the Beijing Winter Olympics has turned out much better than what was initially expected. Despite diplomatic boycotts by some Western countries and political bickering about China's human rights issues, the Chinese are more than pleased with the event. Not only did China give its best-ever showing at a Winter Olympics, it also pulled off a decent event despite the pandemic, and has generated great interest in winter sports among the Chinese public.
After making some comparisons, netizens believe that the chained woman (left) resembles Li Ying, a missing woman from Sichuan. (Internet)

Chained mother of eight brings attention to abduction and sale of women in rural China

The viral posts of a woman chained by the neck in Feng county, Jiangsu province, have ignited public outcry. It is not just the plight of the mother of eight that has enraged netizens, but also the abhorrent handling of the case by local authorities and communities. Zaobao correspondent Chen Jing uncovers the hidden layers of injustice, gender imbalance and messy governance the incident has brought to light.
Students and staff at Huachiew Chalermprakiet University (HCU) making Chinese New Year decorations, 10 February 2022. (HCU/Facebook)

Rising Chinese student enrolment in Thailand: Cash cows at a cost

Thailand is reaping the benefits of a steady stream of Chinese students choosing Thailand as its destination of choice for university studies, particularly at its private universities. The trend, however, is not cost-free. There are a host of problems it has to grapple with, including possibly compromised academic standards as well as suspicions of Chinese students flouting their visa conditions by engaging in full-time business activities.
Competitors in a cross-country skiing event at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, National Cross-Country Centre, Zhangjiakou, China, 16 February 2022. (Lindsey Wasson/Reuters)

Media coverage of Beijing Winter Olympics shows parallel worlds

It seems that the Chinese and foreign media have very different approaches to covering the Beijing Winter Olympics — Chinese journalists want to portray the favourable side of the Games while foreign journalists tend to take a more critical stand in focusing on problems. Zaobao correspondent Yang Danxu examines this phenomenon.
As Taiwan is set to become a super-aged society in 2025, what is the plight of the elderly destitute in an ageing Taiwan?

Growing old alone: Elderly poor want better housing, better care in Taiwan

Taiwan is set to become a super-aged society in 2025. At present, a considerable proportion of its elderly face poor living conditions, with 430,000 living in old residential buildings without elevator access. There is also a sizeable number of elderly folk who are homeless and living on the streets. What are the authorities doing to meet the living needs of the elderly and provide them with support? How are community groups playing a role?
People wearing face masks to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and carrying umbrellas walk on the street during a rainy day in Taipei, Taiwan, 26 November 2021. (Annabelle Chih/Reuters)

Is Taiwan moving towards 'living with the virus'?

Taiwan’s efforts in preventing the spread of Covid-19 has been recognised by the international community. However, the prolonged border restriction is beginning to impact its economy and its people. Is the island ready to move on to its next stage of recovery?