Have you ever noticed that most English-language China blogs are written by men? While the universe of women English China blogs may be smaller, these blogs add voices that may hint at the differences in experience between foreign men and women in China. As a start, we compiled a directory of 48 72 women who blog about China primarily in English. Most of these bloggers are currently in China but some are not. The list also includes group blogs and anonymous blogs.
Preface, questions, and thanks
Last week, after my post about Eclectic China Blogs–offering an antidote to the “standard business and current affairs white-dude-in-China blogs”– an interesting blog and email conversation emerged between Adam Minter, Laurence Sheed, Fiona Lee, and myself about why there seem to be fewer women writing English-language blogs about China. UPDATE 5/8: Edna Zhou has volunteered to help categorize the blogs on this post! Thanks!
Do women bring a different and distinct voice to the English-language China blogosphere? Why do expatriate men in China blog? Do expatriate women blog for different reasons? What do women choose to express that men do not? And other way around?
I started to organize a list of English-language blogs about China written by women. So first, thanks: this directory was compiled with the help of numerous people, including contributions from: James of iSpyShanghai, The Gal at Global Gal, Diana Kuan of Appetite for China, Fiona Lee of quirkyBeijing, Adam Minter of Shanghai Scrap, and Rebekah Pothaar of ChinaTravel.net and Shanghaiist. 5/5 Update: added a few from Joel Martinsen of Danwei.org and Chris Horton. I wish I could wikify this post and allow the community to add to it. Please drop a comment and I will add, change and correct the post as needed.
When I shared my preliminary list with Adam Minter, he shared some insightful observations:
First, the news and translation oriented bloggers – Sky Canaves, Rebecca MacKinnon, Alice Xin Liu, for example – are indistinguishable from their male counterparts. And that is how it should be. So, in that sense, we don’t need this list.
Second … but if you take a look at the personal narrative blogs, the travel blogs, we need this list quite badly. Taken as a whole, they offer a very different account of what it is to be a foreigner in China than what we find in the average ‘foreign white guy’ blog. And that is how it should be: the lives of foreign women in China are often quite different than those lived by foreign men…Now, just to be clear: I’m not succumbing to a kind of Mars/Venus analysis here. But I think a reader would have to be willfully dumb not to notice the thematic and topical differences that exist between (many) male and female authored blogs, and that – in the China blog world – the male perspective (often, the prototypical culturally sensitive white man in a strange, irrational, authoritarian land perspective) is favored.
I’m still going through the process of reading, reviewing, and categorizing all the blogs so I don’t think I have much more insight to add than Adam’s reflections. But I know there are differences and will step out on a limb and share my opinion in a future post.
Directory of Women English-language China Bloggers – 72
news and translation
Sophie Beach – http://chinadigitaltimes.net/
Sky Canaves / Juliet Ye – http://blogs.wsj.com/chinajournal/
Ying Chan (陈婉莹), head of China Media Project (but infrequent blogger) - http://cmp.hku.hk/
Elaine Chow – http://shanghaiist.com/
Fauna – http://www.chinasmack.com/
Alice Xin Liu – http://www.danwei.org
Alice Poon – http://www.asiasentinel.com/
Maggie Rauch – http://www.chinasportstoday.com/en/
Joyce Lau (of IHT) – http://joycelau1.spaces.live.com/
Erica Schlaikjer, CC Huang, Carla Fernandez, and Sophia Mendelsohn at http://responsiblechina.com/
Adrienne Mong, Bo Gu at MSNBC World Blog – Beijing – http://worldblog.msnbc.msn.com/archive/category/1109.aspx
Jocelyn Eikenburg – http://www.thewuway.net/blog
travel and food
Diana Kuan – http://appetiteforchina.com/
Fiona Lee - http://www.quirkybeijing.com/
Sara Naumann http://gochina.about.com/
Rebekah Pothaar – http://chinatravel.net/
Jane Voodikon – http://gochengdoo.com/en/
Pepper - http://eatdrinkchengdu.blogspot.com
politics, history, society
Aimee Barnes – http://www.aimeebarnes.com/blog/
Xujun Eberlein – http://www.insideoutchina.com/
Rebecca MacKinnon – http://rconversation.blogs.com/rconversation/
Luisetta Mudie / Sarah Jackson-Han - http://rfaunplugged.wordpress.com/
Various Authors including Angilee Shah, Susan Brownell, Nicole Barnes, Susan Jakes, Leslie T. Chang, Miri Kim, Kate Merkel-Hess -http://thechinabeat.blogspot.com/
arts and culture
education (learning Chinese/teaching/etc.)
Anonymous – http://chinadirt.blogspot.com/
Gina - http://ginainchina.blogspot.com/
Mrs. Johnson - http://thejohnsonsinchina.blogspot.com/
Donna Gorman - http://emailfromtheembassy.blogspot.com/
Anna Greenspan - http://www.wakinggiants.net/blog/
Jen Ambrose - http://jenambrose.blogspot.com/
Kristin Bair O’Keefe - http://kristinbairokeeffe.typepad.com/
personal journal and not yet classified
Ana Campos – http://meiadeleite.com/
Susanne Crosetto – http://beijingnotebook.blogspot.com/ She’s no longer in Beijing but she keeps blogging on Beijing and China-related things.
Flying Fish – http://flyingfish-windcaughtinanet.blogspot.com/
Lisa Fredsti – http://papertigertail.blogspot.com/
Gina.anne - http://www.ginaanneinshanghai.blogspot.com/ – is a Fulbright scholar in Shanghai, and she uses her blog to write research notes. Really fascinating stuff.
Global Gal – http://global-gal.com/
Iris Jumbe – http://www.artonym.com/
Jessica – http://thelocaldialect.wordpress.com
Anne Kokas – http://shotinshanghai.blogspot.com
Josie Liu – http://josieliu.blogspot.com/
Marjorie M. Liu – http://marjoriemliu.com/index.php?/blog/
Panthea Lee – http://panthealee.com/
Toffler Niemuth – http://tofflerann.com/
Mary Ann O’Donnell – http://maryannodonnell.wordpress.com/
Rebekah Pothaar – http://whoreoftheorient.blogspot.com/
Suzie - http://beijingnotebook.blogspot.com/
Jonna Wibelius – http://sheinchina.blogspot.com/
Iris Yee – http://effedinbeijing.blogspot.com/
Siyan Yu – http://www.metrobloggen.se/jsp/public/index.jsp?article=19.4551593
Edna Zhou – http://ednainchina.blogspot.com/
Elizabeth Dilts – http://americanfairasia.blogspot.com/ [young journalist in Nanjing]
“Jimmie” of One Child Policy Homeschool – http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/Jimmie
Anonymous - http://exhausteddiligence.blogspot.com/
Aventurina King – http://blog.sina.com.cn/jinxiaoyuer (mostly in Chinese, sometimes in English)
Sarah Grace Smith – http://sarahgracesmith.blogspot.com/
Squarefaced – http://www.squarefaced.com/
Daisann McLane – http://www.daisann.com/
MGD – http://www.beijingcalling.blogspot.com/
AF – http://thinkchina.wordpress.com/
Amy Chang – http://quelquefois.net/toujours
Amy Gibson – http://thisismynoise.blogspot.com/
Law professor Flora Sapio – http://florasapio.blogspot.com/
Novelist Catherine Sampson – http://www.catherinesampson.com/pages/blog/index.asp
Teacher KimmieG in Yunnan – http://kimginchina.blogspot.com/
Mollie Kirk – http://chinasociety.blogspot.com/
Charlene Chi: http://madeinchinaandamerica.blogspot.com/
next steps and your turn!
OK, this is just a start. I’ll be updating, adding links and modifying this post to classify. I’ve also invited Fiona Lee to edit and make changes to the post. (On a personal note, my wife is expecting our baby any day now (YIKES), so that’s why I had to put out this post in the current rough format!)
- Have we missed anyone that should be included? Does anyone we included NOT belong?
- Did we misclassify anyone? Do you have a better way to classify these blogs?
- Are there obvious differences between male and female English-language China bloggers that you want to share?