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Researchers have noted this shortcoming and have called for greater empirical examination of partner selection in contemporary urban China (Xu et al.
2000) and particularly the attitudinal and expectational dimensions of dating (Hu and Scott 2016) and how these might vary by gender (Shek 2006).
Much of this may also related to institutional changes, as the interpersonal relationships of students have been somewhat suppressed by colleges and universities (Aresu 2009).
The initiation and maintenance of intimate, romantic relationships have been linked with improved physical and emotional well-being, stronger perceptions of community attachment, and better developmental outcomes for the individuals (e.g., Amato 2010; Braithwaite et al. In China, marriage and family life continues to be a central element within Chinese culture, with adolescents and young adults typically assuming that they will eventually find a partner.
What is lacking, however, is a broader understanding of how contemporary Chinese youth view dating and intimate relationships.
Not surprisingly, Chinese parents tend to strongly discourage their daughters and sons from becoming sexual active, and many are opposed to their children being involved in dating relationships, at all (Stevenson and Zusho 2002). But China’s cultural context goes back several thousands of years.
Aspects of dating, such as appropriate behaviors within dating and the appropriate age at which to begin dating, are greatly influenced by the larger social context in which they occur (Chen et al. Similarly, researchers have noted that attitudes and expectations concerning dating and intimate relationships are also affected by the larger cultural context (Hynie et al. It has a written language that has been in use for the longest continuous period of time in the world, and it has the oldest written history (Han 2008).