The Masculinity Issue—it sounds like something you might find at the back of an oily garage, underneath plentiful thumbed copies of Autocar, Playboy, and Bridal magazines.
We’re not joking about the last part. Thanks partly to their parents, Chinese men are usually eager to get married, often as soon as possible, ideally once they’ve graduated and begun a lucrative career. Some are even keener than their female counterparts (a situation which may be attributable to a longstanding surplus of males in Chinese society; see p.40).
One might ask why. After all, society rigidly expects that a groom will provide his bride with a home and car (not a lease, by the way), a son (or two, to make the government happy), and a stable future. Once he takes her up the aisle, the pressures don’t let off from there, which might be why divorce rates are spiralling, along with infidelity cases. Our cover story (p.26) looks at the troubles with men, from school—where boys are said to be undergoing a “masculinity crisis”—to work, marriage, and beyond.
In other news, we play mahjong (p.54), look at Crazy Rich Asians from a sober Chinese perspective (p.88), visit China’s Korean minority (p.66), try hotpot alone (p.82), remember the Dixie Mission (p.84), and have a night on the town in the Song dynasty (p.12).