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Women in China: Rise of the Phoenix

  • Broadcast in Women
Melissa A Rosati

Melissa A Rosati


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China is now the second largest economy in the world as of 2011, but do you know that 40-45% of women make up the labor force that made this “leap forward” possible?

My guest is May Tchao, a documentary filmmaker with an extraordinary project.

Rise of the Phoenix is a 60 minute documentary exploring how the unprecedented economic transformation of China’s society is changing the roles, rights and status of modern-day Chinese women against the backdrop of a sexist culture. This film captures the nuances, complexity and rich texture of these changing lives as they confront opportunities and challenges created by traditions of gender bias and the One Child Policy.

May will discuss what it is like as an outsider returning to her home country. We will compare and contrast the female experience between the two worlds — one that traditionally treats women as second-class citizens; the other that celebrates female independence and self-expression.

Born in Guangzhou, China and raised in Hong Kong, May Tchao has a unique background in understanding and experiencing the two cultures, allowing her to see their different virtues and burdens with clear eye and with empathy.