By Gerald Sims,2014-04-16 22:24
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    In recent years, an increasing number of Chinese young people have chosen a "naked marriage." 近年来,越来越多的中国年轻人选择“裸婚”。

    The term, coined in 2008 by Chinese bloggers, has drawn intense discussion since a popular TV series dubbed "Naked Marriage Era" brought the subject into the public spotlight and struck a chord with young Chinese, especially those born in the 1980s. “裸婚”是2008年网民发明的新


    The term refers to a couple who get hitched before acquiring a house and car and who spend little on their wedding ceremony. Some do so due in an effort to declare their independence, while others simply have no choice. “裸婚”即(结婚时不买车,不买房,结婚仪式花费很少。有


    "Naked marriage" marks a sharp department from China's established marriage customs, which encourage parents to help lay the material foundation for their children's marriage by helping them secure a house and car. “裸婚”与长久以来父母帮助子女打好婚姻基础,为孩子买车买房的


    According to a poll conducted by the social investigation center of the China Youth Daily prior to this year's Chinese Valentine's Day, Qixi Festival that fell on Saturday, nearly 48 percent of 3,214 respondents said they supported the idea of "naked marriages," while about 23 percent opposed it. 周六是中国的情人节——“七夕”,《中国青年报》的一项社会调查显示,在被访的3214


    The vote also showed that about 55 percent of the respondents viewed courage as essential when engaging in a "naked marriage" and 43 percent of them agreed that married life of the couple who had a "naked marriage" would be much tougher than their peers with better financial status.



"Naked Marriage", Go for the Essential of Marriage

    To Chinese people, getting married is one of the major events in one's life and traditionally there is no divorce. You can tell how important Chinese view a marriage. That's why people are spending more and more money on weddings and keep raising their standards for choosing a mate. But as the financial crisis swept the world in 2008, a group of young Chinese people have gone against the tradition by getting married "naked". What's a "naked marriage"? Let's hear more from our reporter.


    "A naked marriage is just getting married without anything, no ring, no ceremony, no apartment or car, not even a honeymoon or money saved up."

    That's the basic idea of a naked marriage. More young people, especially in big cities, accept the idea of getting married without anything but a marriage certificate, which only costs the couple 9 yuan or about 1 dollar. Usually, a wedding ceremony may cost at least several thousand yuan, without calculating in the cost of buying an apartment and a car.


    Hu Qin and her fiancé went to Beijing last year starting their new careers, and rented an apartment in Beijing. They'll have a naked marriage this year, only having one day off to get the marriage certificate.

    "I think the most important thing in getting married is to have the certificate. Personally, I don't like to wear any jewelry. Even if he gives me a diamond ring I'll just put it in a box at home. And speaking of the wedding ceremony, I saw many of my friends were terribly bothered by it and even their parents felt exhausted when preparing the ceremony. Further more, my fiancé is from Guizhou and my hometown is in Sichuan, and now we work and live in Beijing, so it's even harder for us to prepare a wedding ceremony. Therefore, we decided to have a simple marriage."

    Getting married has always been one of the most important moments in one's life here in China. In the 1970s, people would prepare a bike, a watch and a sewing machine as the "must have" gifts when married. And in the 1980s, things had changed into a refrigerator, a TV set, and a washing machine. Along with the economic development of society, the gifts for marriage become more expensive, like now many people would ask for apartments and cars. Therefore, in such a material society, the group of young people's choice for simple marriages gets people's attention.

    Gong Haiyan is the CEO of a popular matchmaking network "Shi Ji Jia Yuan". She is crowned as the best internet matchmaker in China by the online community.

    "On our network, men who have a better economic condition and women who are young and pretty will have better results. You can tell from that people now are more materialistic. But as we went through the economic crisis and real estate prices have rocketed, people gradually lowered their prospects down to earth. It's a good phenomenon to see young couples go back to the essence of marriage."

    However, many parents don't agree with "naked marriage", especially the girls' parents. Xu Jie has a daughter who is in her twenties. She is strictly against the idea. She says a solid material basis is fundamental for a happy marriage.

    "If my daughter will get married, my only requirement for them is that they should have their own place to live. If they don't want a ceremony, then at least they should go out for a trip just to remember the moment. Since that's the only chance in your life. When you get old, if you want to make up for missing your times, it won't come back again. With only the 9-yuan certificate, I don't believe they'll treasure their marriage. Since now the society has changed compared to our time. It has so much material attraction."

    Xu says when they were young, all the families were fairly the same, didn't have so many differences. All the couples went through hardships and improved their lives step by step. As a parent, she doesn't want her daughter to suffer a rough time like her.

    "On one hand, I think the naked marriage lacks a sense of security. And on the other hand, I think


    why my daughter should lead a hard life. Although people say 'they'll have bread', it is only an illusion. Reality is always cruel. But if that is my daughter's choice, I'll try my best to help them to buy an apartment or to pay for their wedding photos and a honeymoon trip."

    The concept of "naked marriage" challenges the traditional views on marriage and love. Under the growing living pressures, most men are exhausted by providing the family and the mission is becoming impossible. And women are now independent inside the economy. Therefore, more young girls don't mind having a naked marriage.

    Guo Fanni, an office lady is one of them. She embraces the idea and she sees the man's capability to earn money more important than the money he actually has.

    "I accept the idea. I actually bought my own apartment rather than ask him to buy one for me. I feel safe and comfortable with that. I'm marrying a man not his money. Although I admit a marriage needs a material basis, I still think the capability to earn money is more important than how much he has to start with. I can't bear a man who has no initiatives."

    During the interview, most girls accepted naked marriage as long as they and their would-be husbands love each other. And most of men interviewed would like to try their best to dress up their marriage. Unless they don't have other options, they wouldn't have a naked marriage with their lover. And young people are much more confident in their love lives than their parents.


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