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Chinese Culture Questions and Answers (Q&A)

The Chinese do not necessarily eat everything available under the sun. However, under the current government - the Chinese Communist Party - a lot of people in China live on less than $10 a day. That is barely enough to feed one person for a day.

Most of these people have a large family, even if some of their daughters aren’t legally registered (and aren’t recognized as alive by the government because of it) because of the one child policy that was in place until very recently.

Since most people live on barely enough to feed anyone for a full day and make it worth it, the Chinese people tend to eat some things that others wouldn’t think of eating. Crickets and other insects, for example, make a good source of protein in this situation.

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Chinese people don’t help each other for a variety of reasons. Some of them are the same ones you and I would give when a friend needs our help but we can’t: I’m sick, I don’t have the money, etc. However, there’s a much simpler reason that the Chinese don’t help each other. In classic Chinese culture - IE before the communists took over - it was looked down upon.

Even though the communist party has declared that most of these teachings are not Chinese, there are sayings such as “plow your roof before your neighbor’s” that the rest of the world contributes to the ancient Chinese philosophers.The most well known of these is Confucius, but that’s for another time.
This simply chalks up to a cultural difference.

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This is a tricky question to answer. Officially, China’s CCP is atheist, and any member of the CCP has to be an atheist as well. However, there are still Muslims, Buddhists, and Christians, among others, in China. This brings up an interesting power dynamic. Anyone who wants to worship and not be persecuted for it has to join one of the approved religions and go to a Chinese-government approved place of worship.

This has led to many “house” versions of the religions - where the practitioners keep it secret. A good example of this is the current persecution of Falun Gong (which is more a meditation practice than a religion, but it fits the pattern so well), which had been incredibly popular in China in the 1980s.

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A quick Google search for this reveals the typical kind of dress you’d see on Halloween or in Chinese shops: a tight fitted bodice, long skirt with a slit to the knee, usually in a brocade fabric with Chinese characters. However, this is what the CCP, or Chinese Communist Party, wants you to believe is traditional. More traditional clothing was flowy, with higher waists. Think empire waist dress meets ballgown without all the fluff of the skirt of the ballgown.

However, in modern day China, most people dress like you and I. Jeans and a tee-shirt are perfectly fine. Those who have religious garments might have a harder time legally wearing those, since the CCP’s stance on religion is not favorable, but that’s the only exception.

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Most Chinese do support their government, publicly. This final word is the key here. The Chinese Communist Party, or the CCP, does not like anyone bad mouthing them. The more negatively someone talks about the CCP in China, the more likely it is that they are being watched by the police. A lot of people within China are not happy with their government.

This is easily understandable when you think about the image of China. Most likely, you immediately thought of flashy lights, lots of skyscrapers, modern buildings, etc. That’s what you’d get in Beijing, Shanghai, and other large cities along the coast. However, further inland, many people are still in poverty, and there is no way for them to get out of poverty because the local governments are just as corrupt as the national government.

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As of 2016, there are about 1.34 million millionaires in China. That’s just in China. There are probably quite a few that started in China but had moved out by the time that survey was taken. China has a population in the billions, so it’s a good percentage - about 9.7% of the population at the time.

This is because China has an odd economy. To get anything done, businesses have to grease the wheels. Locals have to grease the wheels for favorable policies. Corruption is rife in China’s government, and it doesn’t help that the government has purposefully passed many laws that favor Chinese businesses and promote intellectual theft. As long as the CCP can show that they’re doing a great job, anything is game.

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Dog meat is considered to be something akin to pork or beef in a few areas of China. One of the most well known areas where dog meat is eaten is Yulin, in Guangxi province. There is a dog meat festival known as the Yulin Dog Meat Festival held in this city every year since 2009.

Between 10,000 and 15,000 dogs were eaten at this festival, which has been actively protested since it started, when it began. In 2015, that number is reported to have dropped to about 1,000 dogs eaten during the ten day festival.

However, considering how poor some Chinese citizens are, it does make sense that dogs might be eaten outside of this festival.

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Nowadays, no. The current Chinese culture is not incredibly liberal; they cling to their tradition and to their way of life. However, some might argue that in the late 1940s, this wasn’t true. That’s when the CCP - or Chinese Communist Party - rose to power. That’s information for another question, though, so I’ll leave that be.

Today, China clings to whatever the CCP tells them. In that, they are liberal without knowing it. The CCP will run media that fits whatever their current narrative is. One example of this is what’s happening between current President Xi Jingping and former president Jiang Zemin. Everyone who had connections to Zemin is being put in jail by Jingping. This “power struggle” is covered up in the media with the guise of “subverting state power”. Ouch.

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For the most part, Chinese would look at you like you’re crazy and say “what censorship?” I’m kidding. Most Chinese either get the heck out of China and come to places like the USA where there is no censorship on such a grand scale, or they use virtual private networks - VPNs - to access censored information. Of course, this has led to a massive increase in how much censorship goes on in China.

There’s actually a new law going into effect soon (I forget the date it will actually go into effect) that states the only VPN a person in China can use is the CCP’s VPN. And they have to pay for it. And it’s not all that secure because the CCP will be reading everything.

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There are twelve that we know of. In historical order, from oldest to newest, they are the Shang, the Zhou, the Qin, the Han, the Sui, the Tang, the Song, the Yuan, the Ming, the Qing, the Republic, and Mao Zedong. (Look up the Chinese dynasty song for pronunciations and a catchy song that’ll be stuck in your head all day.)

The most recent would be that of Mao Zedong, or the communists. However, each of the twelve dynasties contributed something to China’s history. In fact, for most of history, China was a world power, and it’s mainly due to the way China was ruled.

Quick note: I say that there are twelve dynasties that we know of because China is a very old country. There are probably more that have been lost to time.

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