Society and Identity
Caught in the context of a highly competitive development process, within the framework of a policy which limited their reproductive capacity to a single child, PRC urban families have, in recent decades, attached growing importance to their child's education, aiming to lead them to professional and personal success. This, however, also had an impact on the capacities of many young adults to marry early. In this context, the phenomenon of “marriage corners” mushroomed in large cities all over China along the last decade. By the critics it generates but as well the forms of relationships that it displays, the phenomenon can allow for a better understanding of the transformation of the Chinese subjects and of their inter-generational relationships. In this presentation, I suggest that the matchmaking practices amongst middle and upper-middle urban classes are before all normative. Specifically, I will observe their prescriptive character by examining the affective tensions expressed by the parents in the context of these gatherings.