LGBTQ in China

LGBTQ in China

China LGBT: court says homosexuality can be called a ‘mental disorder’
A young woman lost a court appeal last week against a publisher in China that called homosexuality a “mental disorder” in a textbook that is still used in Chinese universities. Handing down its decision last week, the Suyu District Intermediate Court, in the eastern province of Jiangsu, said the textbook description was simply an academic view and not a factual error. The decision has disappointed the Chinese LGBT community and the 24-year-old social worker who filed the lawsuit, who is gay. They said the court’s decision to uphold the ruling was “random and baseless.” In 2016, while studying at the South China Agricultural University at Guangzhou, in China’s eastern Guangdong province, Ou
Being gay in China: One man is shedding light on the plight of homosexual teachers
When Cui Le, a Chinese university lecturer, publically came out as homosexual in 2015, he wanted to show a young woman that people in China supported her and remind her that she was not alone.  He could not have predicted the severity of the oppression, ostracisation and emotional despair he would go through. And yet, not only does he have no regrets, he is shining a light on gay teachers in China, providing a rare glimpse into a community that is seldom discussed in society.  Cui came out to support a lesbian student from the Sun Yat-sen University, who was known as Qiu Bai. She was suing the education ministry for allowing some textbooks to describe homosexuality as a “mental disease.”  S
China LGBT groups squeezed as China tightens rules on internet publishing
New rules to crack down on online speech in China have sent a chill through China’s LGBT community, who worry that organizing efforts or discussions of their lived experience will violate the new regulations.  In late January, the Cyberspace Administration of China instituted strict restrictions on self-publishing for working journalists, notably criticizing their act of practicing “we-media,” a phrase that refers to bloggers who have built up a sizable following on social media platforms.  These new rules quickly expanded and touched almost everyone in China, and self-publishers will need to get an official license to publish about current affairs. But they were a particular cause for conce
Love killer: How the Covid-19 pandemic has left the world a more violent place for the LGBTQ community
In some countries, who you love can be deadly. Same-sex activity is illegal in almost 70 countries. In six, it’s punishable by death. These include Brunei, Iran, Mauritania, Nigeria (the 12 northern states only), Saudi Arabia and Yemen. These were the findings of a world survey on sexual orientation laws released this week that found dozens of nations across the globe still treated same-sex couples as criminals. The organization (The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association) found that while there had been considerable progress providing legal protection for lesbian, gay and bisexual people, there were continuing issues in many countries. The most extreme punishm
Why Elliot Page’s coming out won’t help China’s trans community
Hollywood star Elliot Page has never been scared of going off-script. Six years after coming out as gay, the Oscar-nominated actor announced last week he was transgender, a revelation that was met with love and support from his peers and the public.  “I can’t begin to express how remarkable it feels to finally love who I am enough to pursue my authentic self,” Page wrote in a statement posted on Instagram and Twitter. Yet for members of China’s trans community, expressing their true selves puts them at immense risk of violence, conversion treatment and family rejection.   “Many can’t take the mental pressure, become depressed and even choose suicide,” Beijing transgender woman Chao Xiaomi t
He kissed a man, lost his job. Now he is suing China’s biggest airline for unjust firing
An unlawful firing lawsuit is gaining a lot of attention in China because it might be able to open the Overton window a little bit wider for the LGBT community. The case stems from a surveillance video last autumn, which showed a man passionately kissing a male colleague in an elevator of the apartment building he lived in. The video leaked online and became a sensation in China.  The reaction to the video was mixed in China. False information fanned a negative reaction and a complicated love triangle muddied the waters. That being said, some people said it should not be controversial, asking, “what if they just loved each other?” The man was quickly identified as a flight attendant surname
China’s mandatory sex ed classes are first step on a long road
China has made sex education mandatory for schoolchildren, as growing awareness of sexual harassment and gender inequality prompts calls from parents to improve the country’s sexual literacy.  For the first time, a revised law on protecting minors, passed by the top legislative body on October 17, requires schools and kindergartens to conduct “age-appropriate sex education” for children. It is unclear how the government plans to implement mandatory “sex education.” The law, which comes into effect on the International Children’s Day of June 1 next year, only mentions sexual abuse prevention.  Issues like LGBT rights – a topic that often triggers censorship – will have a slim chance of gettin
China Trends: China’s first lesbian custody case, and a parapolice officer detained
Every Tuesday and Thursday, China Trends takes the pulse of the Chinese social media to keep you in the loop of what the world’s biggest internet population is talking about. Same-sex family in China A lesbian couple’s child custody case set a legal precedent in China and ignited a robust discussion about the rights of same-sex partners.  Using in vitro fertilization (IVF) and donor sperm, a woman in the southern city of Xiamen gave birth to a child, with her partner providing the egg. In February, three months after the woman gave birth, she left her partner, taking the daughter with her and preventing her partner from seeing the girl. The woman who provided the egg sued the birth mother, i
Another LGBT festival cancelled in China
When Xiaomi, a member of the LGBT community, heard that Shanghai Pride week was halting all future events, they felt as if “a building had collapsed to the ground.” “No more, there are no more public large-scale LGBT activities on the Chinese mainland,” they said. The annual festival in Shanghai started in 2009, when it was organized by a few volunteers. It was modeled on the Pride events that have long been a part of the social calendar in many Western countries. Over the past 11 years, the event has grown significantly to become a showcase for art, theater and film, job fairs, discussions and even bicycle rides. Xiaomi took part in last year’s activities and was surprised at the scale and