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Motherhood in Urban China

Wednesday, November 13, 2019 - 14:00

Perfect motherhood: Middle-class mothers in urban China

Comment: Dr. Michala Hvidt Breengaard, post.doc. University of Copenhagen.


Based on in-depth interviews with thirteen middle-class mothers in Shanghai, this paper explores the social construction of the ideal mother in metropolitan China. It reveals that middle-class women face the conflict between their own perception of the ideal status of being a mother and motherhood expected by the family and the society. Whereas the middle-class mothers are keen in seeking a delicate balance between childrearing and their own work and life, their perception of good motherhood is shaped both by gender division within family and the dominant motherhood ideology outside the family. While the middle-class mothers tend to be alert to the media discourse of ‘super-moms’, their self-assessment of whether they are good mothers reflects their deliberate reflection of motherhood and internalization of the dominant repertoire of motherhood. This paper reveals the emergence of ‘knowledge and emotion intensitve motherhood’ in urban China. Nevertheless, it is worth noting how women claim their autonomy in their practice of motherhood.


Chen Meng is an assistant professor of sociology at the School of Sociology and Political Science, Shanghai University. She received her Ph. D in Social Change from Institute for Social Change, University of Manchester. Before that, she earned her MA degrees at the Department of Sociology, University of Birmingham and School of Journalism, Fudan University.

She joined Shanghai University in 2013. Her main area of research is social stratification and social mobility, and her current research interests include social mobility and its social consequences, gender inequality, and class differences in parenting. Having worked as a team member in a few research projects since 2013, she has just started working as PI on a 3-year NSSF-funded project that examines the parenting and mobility strategies of the middle-class families in Shanghai. In the past, Dr. Chen has published in both Chinese and English on intergenerational mobility, health inequality, and gender inequality in China.


Co-ordination for Gender Research, Gendering Asia Network, Think China and NIAS.


NIAS meeting room - 18.1.08
CSS, Center for Health and Society
University of Copenhagen
Øster Farimagsgade 5,
1014 Copenhagen

Please register here.

CFP - Digital Asia 12th Annual Nordic NIAS Council Conference & PhD Course

Monday, December 2, 2019 to Friday, December 6, 2019









Asia has the largest Internet population in the world in absolute numbers, and it is also at the forefront of digital developments in many fields, including governance, entertainment, and e-commerce. The region, however, encompasses a diverse digital landscape that reflects divergent histories, cultures, and socioeconomic and political realities. Proposals should focus on how information and communication technologies (ICTs) are used by, and affect, individuals and communities in their cultural, socioeconomic, and political lives.

We welcome participants from different disciplines within the humanities and social sciences, as well as from the field of area studies. We particularly encourage interdisciplinary approaches. Contributions are welcome that address topics in a particular Asian country, or engage in comparative research on several Asian countries and/or non-Asian countries.


Keynote Speakers

  • Larissa Hjorth, Distinguished Professor, ECP Director, Design and Creative Practice, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia
  • Pauline hope Cheong, Professor, Arizona State University, USA
  • Aim Sinpeng, Dr., Department of Government and International Relations, University of Sydney, Australia
  • Florian Schneider, Senior University Lecturer, Leiden University, The Netherlands

Deadlines conference:

  • 7 June 2019: Deadline for submitting abstracts (maximum 300 words)
  • 15 June 2019: Acceptance of abstracts by the organising committee
  • 15 August 2019: Deadline for registration
  • 1 October 2019: Deadline for hotel booking at discount rate at Elite Hotel Ideon. Single room 1159 SEK, Double room 1364 SEK (all prices including VAT). Please make your booking with the hotel at and mention the Digital Asia conference.

PhD Course
The conference will be combined with a PhD course where doctoral candidates will present and discuss their research projects with senior researchers as well as with fellow doctoral candidates. This PhD course will focus on theories and methodology when working with and on digital developments. Taking the questions, problems, dilemmas, and decisions of the individual research project as the point of departure, the focus will be on how to work with different sources, how to do fieldwork, how to integrate theory, and how to organise a thesis.

Doctoral candidates are also encouraged to present a paper at the main conference. This paper may not be similar to the methodology paper prepared for the PhD course. Students wishing to present a paper at the conference and to attend the PhD course must submit two abstracts.

Commentators for the PhD Course

  • Pauline hope Cheong, Professor, Arizona State University, USA
  • Larissa Hjorth, Distinguished Professor, ECP Director, Design and Creative Practice, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia
  • Aim Sinpeng, Dr., Department of Government and International Relations , University of Sydney, Australia
  • Stefan Brehm, Senior Lecturer, Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University
  • Nicholas Loubere, Associate Senior Lecturer, Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University
  • Astrid Norén Nilsson, Associate Senior Lecturer, Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University
  • Barbara Schulte, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology, Lund University
  • Marina Svensson, Professor and Director, Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University


  • 7 June 2019: Deadline for submitting abstract (maximum 300 words) and CV
  • 15 June 2019: Acceptance by organising committee
  • 15 August: Deadline for registration
  • 1 October: Deadline for submitting PhD paper, and confirming participation and hotel booking (booking for PhD students is done by conference organisers).

For more information please read the attached CFP and go to the conference website

Taking stock of Sino-Nordic relations: Patterns of collaboration, opportunities for advancement and challenges ahead

Wednesday, December 11, 2019 - 13:00 to 14:30

Where do relations between the Nordic countries and China currently stand? From an overall perspective, bilateral relations have progressed significantly over the past couple of decades, driven not only by shared economic interests, but also growing interdependence in a globalized world where China has risen to become a central stakeholder of international order. The Nordic countries are well known for their entrepreneurship and innovation skills with respect to green technologies and sustainable development solutions that are critical to China’s modernization objectives, while the sheer scale and purchasing power of the Chinese market give the Nordic countries strong incentives to cultivate closer bilateral relations with Beijing. At the same time, however, relations between the Nordic countries and China face several challenges, including the recurring politization of political differences and the risks of being caught in the middle of the deepening US-China great power rivalry.

This public seminar offers a range of perspectives on relations between the Nordic countries and China, exploring different avenues for advancing existing cooperation, while also identifying potential obstacles. Moreover, the seminar will explore the extent to which the Nordic countries might benefit from adopting a joint Nordic approach towards Beijing. A new report on Sino-Nordic relations, commissioned by the Nordic Council of Ministers, will provide the background for the discussion and will be made publicly available at the seminar. 

The seminar is organized by the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS) & The Fudan-European Centre for China Studies with support from the Nordic Council of Ministers

Venue: Asia House, Indiakaj 16, Copenhagen

Registration: Participation is free, but please register with Katrine Skovdal Herold []




Public seminar: Taking stock of Sino-Nordic relations


Opening words of welcome

Duncan McCargo, Director, Nordic Institute of Asian Studies


A Nordic perspective

Paula Lehtomäki, General Secretary, Nordic Council of Ministers


A Chinese perspective 

Feng Tie, Ambassador, Chinese Embassy in Denmark


A Danish perspective

Mogens Lykketoft, former Danish Foreign Minister


Coffee break and cakes


Sino-Danish research collaboration

Liu Chunrong, Executive Vice Director, Fudan Center at NIAS


Presentation of report on Sino-Nordic relations

Andreas Bøje Forsby, postdoc researcher, Nordic Institute of Asian Studies


Gendering Tranformations: Feminist Knowledge Production and Trans/national Activist Engagement

Wednesday, October 28, 2020 - 09:00 to Friday, October 30, 2020 - 14:00

Call for Papers, Panels and Posters

International Conference

Gendering Transformations: Feminist Knowledge Production and Trans/national Activist Engagement


Dates: October 28th-30th (Tuesday-Friday), 2020
Venue: National Central Library, Taiwan


Dear Colleagues,

It is our great pleasure to announce that the International Conference of Gendering Transformations― Feminist Knowledge Production and Trans/national Activist Engagement will be held in National Central Library, Taiwan from October 28th-30th, 2020. The conference will be a much needed gathering of socially-concerned scholars and activists who are thinking about and interfering into the intersectional inequalities, injustices, and exploitations. We invite gender studies scholars who are working within and across a number of disciplines, methodologies and intellectual traditions. The language of the conference will be English. Authors are invited to submit panel proposals or individual paper proposal to the Conference Submission System ( or by using the Session Proposal Form by February 29, 2020. The abstract should be in English and have a length of approximately 300-500 words.

Topics for submission include but are not limited to:

  1. Bodies and Embodiments
  2. Gender and Care
  3. Gender and Politics
  4. Gender and/in Media
  5. Gender and/in Education
  6. Gender and Ableism
  7. Gender and/in Social Movements
  8. Gender, Medicine and Technology
  9. Gender, Economy, Work and Welfare
  10. Intimacies, Forms and Affects
  11. States, Regions and Globalizations
  12. Politics of Feminist Knowledge Production
  13. Feminisms and/ in Histories and Literatures
  14. Feminisms in Transition: Theories and Practices
  15. Migration Processes /Race/Gender/Class
  16. Gender, Arts and Institutions: Libraries and Museums

Important Dates:

Submission Deadline: February 29, 2020
Author Notification: April 30, 2020
Registration Open: May 1, 2020


National Central Library, Taiwan
Nordic Institute of Asian Studies
Taiwanese Feminist Scholars Association