Desires and Anxieties in Self-Centred Relationships

  • Chao Yang


This chapter explores individualized desires and anxieties in personal relationships, which play an important role in understanding the identity of young Chinese professionals as regards love and intimacy in the post-reform era. By introducing Bauman’s (Liquid Love: On the Frailty of Human Bonds, Polity Press, Cambridge; 2003) concept of self-centred (or individualized) relationships, this chapter examines the changing emotions and attitudes of Chinese young people towards a lifelong relationship as well as the causes of the transition in dating and relationships. The easily entered and exited relationship not only reflects a more tolerant attitude towards changing emotional attachment in dating and relationships, but may also suggest that Chinese youth have a collective identity that is incomplete and subject to change.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Chao Yang
    • 1
  1. 1.Renmin University of ChinaBeijingChina

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