Family ties take new shapes in a prosperous China

p70a From the Christian Science Monitor: “Pang Rongchang was ready to join Mao Zedong’s revolutionary army in the late 1940s. But before he left his Hubei town, his father did what generations of men did for their sons: secured a wife for him. There was no discussion. The bride was hand-carried to the groom’s doorstep from the next village; the marriage was that day. The two had never met before – then lived 50-plus years together.

By contrast, Pang’s son, Liping, married, divorced, then fell in love with Wang Zhe, who works at a Japanese joint venture. They met at Ditan Park by the gate, set up by three layers of friends. She saw Liping was ‘a good one.’ It started raining, they went inside for tea, and it became a second marriage for them both.”

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