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Experts Discuss Latest Trends in Women's Online Reading
Source:Chinese Women's Research Network | Release Date:2018-10-17-
Title: Experts Discuss Latest Trends in Women's Online Reading
Author: Liu Yanmei
Release Date: 2018/10/15
Keyword: Experts, Latest Trends, Women's Online Reading

Experts and authors recently shared their opinions on the so-called "she-era" in China, following the latest launch of an online reading brand that integrates resources from different platforms.

Author Virginia Woolf once said, "A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction."

She wanted to emphasize that a women's freedom cannot be achieved without independent physical space and economic foundations.

However, Shao Yanjun, associate professor of the Department of Chinese Language and Literature of Peking University, says Woolf dared not imagine at that time that female writers would also need an "independent publishing space without the gaze of potential male judges".

But Shao believes this "space" has now arrived, alongside online literature and its substantial development over the past 20 years.

The number of readers of online literature in China reached 380 million in 2017, of which 45 percent were women. Women outnumbered men as core digital readers, with a ratio of 56 to 44.

Among the new generation of mainstream users, the proportion of females willing to pay for online reading is as high as 76.6 percent, according to statistics.

Up to 68 percent of the audience of online non-fiction consist of female.

"The online reading has seen fundamental changes in the past 20 years as women have turned from  "one to be desired" to "one to desire, to consume and even to create," Shao explained.

According to her, since the emergence of the Internet era, Chinese women have acquired their own independent space, and female-oriented literature has begun to incorporated with feminist culture in the field of public opinion on the Internet.

There is a trend of women writing with their own words to satisfy their desire after they escape the male gaze. The subjects of online books for women, which were originally confined to the recurring themes of love, have already expanded. Some focus on women in the work place, and some are science-fiction.

In these works, the problems of women are no longer confined to issues around men, but their relationship with the world.

Tianxia Guiyuan, a famous female online writer, who has also been a policewoman for 17 years, said women and men are treated equally in her profession.

"As a policewoman, it's natural for me to form an idea that I'm no inferior to a man. I also hope that this concept can be instilled in every girl today."

The women in her novels are always fearless and brave. What she pursues is equal rights and absolute equality between men and women, and she says women do not have to be above men, but men and women should respect and understand each other.

"The strength of my heroines comes from their self-reliance, self-confidence, self-improvement, self-respect and perseverance, which is an eternal power."

"Deep inside their hearts, women are hoping to gain more support in society, gain real equality in life, as well as equal treatment," Tianxia added.

The new brand is called Hongxiu Reading. Shao believes "it is a big step forward for  women's liberation".

"In the past, the function of realist literature was to mirror reality, to help you understand the nature of the world, and then transform the world."

"But it has changed now. We no longer use it to know the world but to cope with it," Shao concluded.

 (Source: and edited by Women of China)
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