Young Rural-Urban Migrant Fathers in China: Everyday 'China Dream' and the Negotiation of Masculinity

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Drawing upon a study on rural-urban migrant young men at a delivery company in a southern Chinese city, I examine how they make sense of their private life as fathers. Situated within the pervasive national discourse of the 'China Dream' in which individual aspiration for a better life is advocated in line with the prosperity of the nation marked by neoliberal modernization, the paper seeks to understand how the marginalized urban working class young men make sense of their subjectivities through a gender lens. In particular, I investigate the process of masculine identification in the young migrant fathers' narratives. It highlights the way the young men negotiate ordinary masculine ideals and familial practices of modern fatherhood, desiring a better future for the next generation. I explore how they navigate through the constraints of material inequalities (i.e. as urban working class) and the tension with their gender responsibilities/expectations within a wider familial context, in making sense of their gender subjectivities.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
Early online date30 Jan 2019
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 30 Jan 2019

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© 2019 The Nordic Association for Research on Men and Masculinities. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details.

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