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Rise of "naked marriages" in China


13:41, March 19, 2013


Key Words:wedding;marriage; love
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For newlyweds in China, having a new apartment and car are part of the prerequisites for getting married. But in recent years, as the cost of living goes up, a new notion called a "naked marriage" has arisen. It has become a new trend for many contemporary young people in China.

With this small marriage certificate in hand, a lifetime of commitment and more responsibility can be expected. And for couples in a naked marriage, this certificate also encompasses other meanings.

Yang Ling, Chengdu Resident, said, "I think two people married based on love, striving together for a better life, should be our ultimate goal."

Yang Shijin, Chengdu Resident, said, "There are many people like us born in the 80’s. Our families cannot afford to buy us new apartments, cars, diamond rings. I think that’s very normal for regular families. We must rely on our own to forge a better future for ourselves."

Sun Wenkui is working on his Ph.D in Biology at Sichuan University and lives in a rented place with his wife. He and his wife married in 2011. Unlike other couples that have luxury sedans pick up their brides during the wedding ceremony, Sun used eight tricycles. With neither a new car nor a new apartment like other married couples in China, they live in this small room. Sun says their relationship is more simple than a marriage with a well prepared material foundation.

Sun Wenkui, PH.D Student, Sichuan Univ., said, “The most important part of a relationship is love. I believe our living conditions will gradually get better.”

Professor Hu says a "naked marriage" is in sharp contradiction with China’s established marriage customs, which encourage parents to help lay the material foundation for their children’s marriage. As living costs continue to rise, this phenomenon will likely become more popular in the future.

Prof. Hu Guangwei, Sichuan Academy of Social Sciences, said, "Now that our living condition has improved, we can spend more money on a wedding. But for young people, who live off more modest means, affording a proper wedding is much more difficult, especially given the increasing cost of life."

But not all people have a positive opinion of naked marriages. According to a survey conducted by, only about 40 percent of the 3,500 people surveyed luiked the idea of a naked marriage. About 80 percent of men supported naked marriages, while 70 percent of women did not support the idea. The women thought these marriages would not be stable. But many still say that marriage simply means love and striving together to create a better future.

Liu Yang, CCTV Reporter, said, “Experts say the so called “naked marriage” is more than just a challenge to traditional marriage customs. It shows that young people are finding new ways to pursue personal happiness. Undoubtedly, financial stability plays a big role in a stable marriage, but money should not override the core spirit of marriage which is love.

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