Critical research approaches: The studies of gender in China’s consumerist discourse

Document Type


Presentation Date

Spring 10-13-2015

Conference Name

School of Foreign Languages

Conference Location

Fuzhou University, Fuzhou, China

Peer Review



This 120- minute presentation sheds light on one of the dominant research paradigms in Western scholarly traditions: the critical paradigm. While the critical paradigm entails an array of approaches, I focus on explicating critical rhetoric, critical ethnography, semiotics, and critical discourse analysis via using examples from my own published works and ongoing research about gender within China’s consumerist discourse. Specifically, I draw from my study of women’s bodies and the consumption of cosmetic surgery, my reading of the images of the modern Chinese bride in bridal media, and my analysis of the reconstructions of post-socialist femininities and masculinities in the popular dating shows. This talk not only gives a glimpse of the nuanced application of the various critical approaches, but also points to the importance of interrogating the vernacular, popular discourses in our everyday life, which create and reinforce intertwined social and gender inequalities.


critical paradigm, gender studies, post-sociaist China


Other Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

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