Why does China have so few female politicians?
In 1949 the communists of Mao Zedong took power in China. Since then no woman has been appointed to the top political body in China or become a top leader for the country. This may change when the Beijing Communist party celebrates the beginning of the second five-year term of Xi Jinping. This may additionally reshuffle the upper echelons of the party. There is a female Chief Executive in Hong Kong and a female President in Taiwan. Many individuals believe the Communist party in China will collapse before China is led by a woman.
The signs show the Communist party does not want to give power to a woman. They want women taking care of their families at home while the men run the nation. It is possible one of the standing committee’s seven spots may be clinched by a woman. Sun Chunlan heads the United Front Work Department. This group fortifies the influence of the party. The chances of them breaking through the glass ceiling regarding women is five to ten percent. The hopes for Liu Yandong in 2012 were similar and came to nothing. Women leaders are generally unable to enter due to the competitiveness for the seats.
The role of women in Chinese politics is peripheral. The 25 member politburo for the party has only two women. The central committee has 205 full members but only ten are women. In 2012 this number was thirteen. China has 31 provincial governments and none of them are led by a woman. Only two of the governors are women. The lack of women in politics has become a global phenomenon. The phrase stating women are holding up half of the sky is flaunted by the communist regime but they are not setting the right example. Chinese politics are predominantly male due to the structural concepts. Very few women belong to the Communist party, the gender gap regarding the age for mandatory retirement is huge and women are supposed to retire ten years earlier than the men. The discrimination present in Chinese society is rampant. This is especially true in Chinese politics.
The lack of women in politics is also prevalent in the deterioration of women’s rights. The nascent feminist movement in China has been cracked down on by the authorities. Campaigns to push women to marry sooner and have large families is being pushed forward by propaganda. By the year 2050 in excess of 25 percent of the population of China will be over the age of 65. Beijing is convinced this means women should be at home and not in positions of power. The Communist party sees women as vessels for reproduction to secure the nation’s future. The women have better educations now than at any point in Chinese history. The Communist party is ignoring this resource because they view women as mothers and wives.
The crackdown has not prevented women from participating in Chinese politics and this is being challenged. Prior to the 19th party congress a document was being prepared by an advocate for women’s rights named Guo Jianmei. She was going to circulate a document with the intent of urging the leaders of China to correct the political gender imbalance. Last year her center for legal aid was forced to close due to a crackdown. As the women of China continue to clamor for changes the climate is becoming increasingly sensitive. Beijing has been enveloped by a tense political atmosphere because of the crackdown on civil society. Guo Jianmei was actually told she could not accept legal cases or grant any interviews due to the sensitivity of the times.