Leta Hong Fincher is a sociologist at Beijing’s Tsinghua University, and has written for the likes of The New York Timesand Dissent. Her new book explores the effects of sustained governmental campaigns that encourage women to marry young, in order to cut down the surplus of single men in the country. Fincher argues that women—terrified of becoming old maids at 27—are being shamed into matrimony (an institution which in China does little to protect women’s rights). In the process, female home-ownership and participation in the labor force has declined, while gendered wealth inequality is increasing. Contrary to the popular myth that women have fared well in China’s economic boom, Fincher highlights gender-based structural discrimination, and in doing so elucidates over-arching problems with China’s economy, politics and development. Join the author for a discussion of her work.
Jason Wishnow has told the story of Oedipus with vegetables and documented zombie yoga in Williamsburg. Now, fresh off a stint as TED’s director of film and video, the Lower East Side filmmaker is set to complete his most daunting production yet: a 10-minute short in which Chinese artist-activist Ai Weiwei will make his acting debut.