Lecturer in China says women in sexy dresses bring bad luck and natural disasters

Lecturer in China says women in sexy dresses bring bad luck and natural disasters
PHOTO: The Straits Times

Subservient behaviour advised, along with beatings by husbands

A lecture held at a university in Jiangxi province that included what to many seemed like discrimination against women - as well as flouting common sense in science - has remained a topic of heated discussion online over the past two weeks.

The lecturer, Ding Xuan, was described as a teacher of traditional culture at China Women's United Foundation and vice-chairwoman of the Hebei Provincial Traditional Culture Studies Association.

"Women wear sexy dresses in order to attract men's attention," Ding says in a video that was shared online.

"Such women will bring bad luck to their parents and children, and are prone to sickness, tragedy, infertility and sexual abuse. They will also trigger natural disasters, such as earthquakes and tsunamis."

She also said that "when a man beats his wife, she should endure it in silence, and those who are beaten often are less likely to fall ill".

An online search showed zero results for an organisation called "China Women's United Foundation". Using Ding's name in the search with the official website of the Hebei association also brought zero results.

The man who picked up the phone on Wednesday at the publicity office at Jiujiang University, where the lecture was held, said he had just taken office and didn't know anything about the lecture.

The university said in an online statement on May 24 that Ding was invited to give a lecture to strengthen students' sense of responsibility to pass on the country's fine cultural traditions.

The lecture was held on the Mother's Day, which fell on May 14, to encourage female students to become good wives and mothers in the future.

"We found that Ms Ding's speech didn't carry anything anti-Party or anti-social. She didn't disseminate superstition either," the school's statement said.

The lecture astonished many internet users. Some said that equality of men and women is achieved through generations of effort, and few people would like to live in a family like the one described by Ding.

"Men and women currently enjoy equal status in a marriage so that men will take care of their wives, and a couple share family duties and build their family into an ideal one in their mind with their joint efforts," said Wu Xiaoyue, a 30-year-old married woman in Shanghai.

Ding also said that the best gift a woman can give her husband for their marriage is her virginity.

"Some women growing up in the old environment may have such beliefs.

In the old times, women relied largely on their husbands, mostly because they didn't have an opportunity to be well-educated and employed," an internet user named "Xiao Maozei" wrote on social media.

Lin Zi, vice-chairwoman of the Shanghai Psychological Counseling Association, said Ding's sensational remarks reminded people that when passing traditional culture to people of the current generation, it needs to be fine-tuned with the development of the times.

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