In this third of six stories from the series Touching Home in China: in search of missing girlhoods, girls raised in the rural towns where the American adoptees were abandoned explore childhood through the lens of gender. When the girls reach their mid-20s, societal and family pressures will push them to marry, then to have a child. Yet, in rapidly changing China, women’s lives are in flux.
This iBook includes engaging videos of the girls working through the challenges of their early lives and their grandmothers remembering theirs; a close-up view of the members of a Chinese girl’s 4-2-1 family – the emerging three-generational arrangement in one-child China; a video rendition of contemporary slang about men and women in China; a gallery of cartoons about so-called “leftover women”; and a slideshow of women activists’ demonstrating about gender-based grievances.
The iBooks series Touching Home in China: in search of missing girlhoods anchors a transmedia project on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and a narrative website. At the heart of the story are two American adoptees returning as teens to the towns in China where each was abandoned as a newborn. There, they meet girls who grew up in these towns and learn about what their own girlhoods might have been like in 21st century rural China. In sharing the realities of their distant upbringings, the girls open a fascinating cross-cultural dialogue. The project’s social media platforms engage a global audience with interactive news and commentary about girls and women’s lives in contemporary China.