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“Chinese Husband + Russian Wife = The Perfect Combination.” An advertisement sponsored by China Radio International in Russian newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta, recently sparked controversy among Russians. The advertisement said that, “Sino-Russian cross-border marriages are the perfect formula.”|
Chinese husbands live a healthy lifestyle, help with housework, and take their marriages seriously, said the advertisement. Russian women are educated, beautiful, and hard-working, and Chinese husbands will give them independence and freedom.
The advertisement was quickly picked up by Russian social media. Netizen “Giza,” wrote, “It is puzzling that a Russian government-run newspaper would publish this kind of 'advertisement.' The 'advertisement' encouraging beautiful Russian girls to marry Chinese men will affect Russia's population growth.”
Netizen “Andrea,” said that the advertisement is nothing surprising. She believes that Russians and Chinese make a good match for marriage and many Chinese men are very happy after marrying Russian women.
A “Discussion Topic”
The advertisement was posted as a collaboration between China Radio International and Rossiyskaya Gazeta. Project leader Mr. Jin stressed that the piece was a “discussion topic,” rather than an “advertisement.” The Chinese and Russian governments hope to promote online communication between young people of the two nations as part of the “Sino-Russian Youth Friendship Exchange Year.” The two sides plan to launch 100 online “discussion topics,” on culture, education, livelihood, employment, love, ideals, and more. The post on Chinese and Russian marriages is one of these topics.
Jin said that this one topic went viral among Russian youth over a short period of time. This of course, led some to misunderstand the post. “A lot of Russian young people thought that the post was an advertisement about getting married to Chinese men. People wondered, why must Russian women find a Chinese man to marry?” said Jin.
Jin said that this discussion deviated from the original point of the post which was: Chinese men are diligent about housekeeping, Russian women are cheerful and generous. “This is what many countries believe, we're just putting it up for discussion,” said Jin.
The Perfect Match?
Actually, Russian women marrying Chinese men is nothing new. In 2013, Russia's RIA Novosti published an article titled, “Chinese husband + Russian Wife: A Perfect Match.” In the article, a Chinese man married to a Russian woman said that, “Russian women are better than Chinese women in many aspects.” The article added that Russian women are interested in Chinese men because they do not drink and they work hard. Chinese traditional ethics are more attractive to them then Russia's culture of masculinity.
In 2004, Russian women Maria Liu spoke of her marriage to a Chinese man to the Global Times. Liu said, “Transnational marriage comes down to fate. Love happens regardless of nationality and ethnicity.” She said that Chinese men love their wives deeply and care for their kids, but life is often full of struggle and they are sometimes a little tired. “After all, everything they do is for their family.”