China 3 Essay Research Paper Although in

China 3 Essay, Research Paper Although in the past the influence of the family in China was weakened due to Communist leaders, today it is the basic structure of

China 3 Essay, Research Paper

Although in the past the influence of the family in China was

weakened due to Communist leaders, today it is the basic structure of

Chinese society. The Chinese family has managed to survive the vast

changes of the past quarter century. It still remains the basic social unit.

China’s population is extremely large, therefore it adopted the one –

child – per – family policy( Ahmad,93). To enforce this policy the

Government set up strict penalties and rewards. Families that insisted

on having more than one child are fined and only receive small portions

of food for their second child. The families that excepted it benefited

greatly. They get wage increases, and a chance for a better more

efficient life.

The success of this policy varies in different areas. In the cities

many families still only have one child. But for the farmers and

peasants, more kids means extra labor so they often have more than

one kid. In rural areas the traditional family consisted of the head of the

household, his sons, and their wives and children, often all living under

one roof.

Land, the main form of wealth in traditional China, was divided

equally among all the landowners surviving sons when he died. Living

conditions for the average peasant are generally better today then they

were in the past. There are more opportunities for education and

greater security for the family as social unit.

Marriage in China has also changed. Today there is a law that

provides for the freedom of choice in marriages. This law also states

that men and woman are equal, therefore a man can no longer

dominate a woman. There are also no more arranged marriages.

The elderly in China still hold their esteem, they are thought to be

wise and have the best advice. Today, family members still get

together to celebrate the spring festival, the traditional time for honoring

their ancestors. In the old days the head of the clan was usually some

kind of imperial official. Today only the names are changed. Chinese

farmers go along with communist organization of agriculture because it

follows family lines(Constable, 84).

One family problem facing the Government is the widespread

desire for male children. If the first child was a girl, she may be

neglected. Some incidents of Infanticide, have been reported in cases

of female children. This happens because most people still want sons

to carry on the male family name and for the heavy labor necessary on

rural farms. Because of this lack of cooperation with the one- child- per-

family policy China’s population continues to grow rapidly.

Today some rural families are still likely to have three generations

under one roof. Despite state ownership of the land, they once again

serve as basic production units. The Production Responsibility System

wrote in 1978(Comptons,95) permits individual families to contract with

their local production team or brigade to lease land for farming.

Production quotes are also contracted, whatever is left after taxes are

paid and the quotes are met belongs to the family. If the family works

hard it can produce a surplus for consumption or sale. This program

was designed to strengthen the role of the traditional family as a

consuming or producing unit.

Families in the city are usually smaller. Since both parents work,

the children are left in day – care centers or schools. Because of the

work situation a husband and wife may see each other only rarely.

Despite such problems family life in the city is stable, and family ties

continue to play a major role in the lives of both parents and children.