The Anatomy of the ‘Superwoman’

Part of the Palgrave Macmillan Studies in Family and Intimate Life book series (PSFL)


This chapter examines Chinese-British inter-ethnic families with working professional migrant Chinese wives. It underlines the role of women as professional migrants, rather than low-skilled workers and ‘trailing wives’, in initiating migration and intermarriage. It reveals the professional Chinese women’s struggle to reject the ideal of ‘womanly Chinese woman’ at home and their dilemma to endorse the same ideal as a professional strength at work. This chapter explores how professional Chinese-British couples develop a strategy of ‘line drawing’ to separate mainstream society from Chinese ethnic enclave, home from work, the nuclear family from extended families to order their lives and make sense of love, symbolic status and individualism. Yet at the same time the exercise of ‘line drawing’ poses new challenges for the professional couples.


Chinese Woman Maternity Leave Chinese Community Marriage Migrant Chinese Identity 
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Copyright information

© The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yang Hu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity of EssexEssexUK

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