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What's being a 'leftover woman' like?

Find out for yourself at the leftover monologues on Sunday

If you live in China, chances are you are familiar with the concept of 'leftover women', those of the female species who are 'left' unmarried at the age of 27. Of course, there are 'leftover men' too, but they get more slack for it, let's be honest, because they're men.

But while many of us know the above term, few of us know or can relate to what it really means to be a 'leftover woman' in China. Is it just endless phone calls from mum asking you to try harder? Is it rounds and rounds of introductions to strangers who someone else thinks you should end up marrying? Or is it, as some academics argue, a symptom of a wider economic gender gap in China?

If you want to find out, this weekend is your opportunity. At The Leftover Monologues, 12 Chinese women (and two men) take to the stage this Sunday night, giving the audience personal and anecdotal insights into what it all means to be society's 'leftover women', in terms of individual hopes, aspirations and daily life in Beijing.

The show has been organised by Roseann Lake, an American journalist who has interviewed of over 100 women about their relationships over the past two years.

Lake says that she wanted others to get the same sense of empathy and understanding as she did when she interviewed these women as a journalist, hearing their voices and emotions straight from their own lips.

For Lake, The Leftover Monologues, which were also shown last year, is a way of allowing so-called leftover women to not only be heard but to be heard close-up, with all the feelings that hearing stories in that sort of environment conjures up in both the teller and listener

For one performance only in Beijing this Sunday, women will tell their real life stories by broach a range of subjects that range from family to crime, and styles that range from serious to the downright absurd. It's rollercoaster of satire, drama, tragedy and all the realities of life.

The show is bilingual, with a mixing of English and Chinese languages throughout. By the end you'll hopefully have a better idea of whether all the cliches are true, and whether it really is as hopeless as the media makes it out to be, for Chinese women above 27 years old.

Find out this Sunday, as the women bare all on stage!

The Leftover Monologues is on Sunday May 24 at 7.30pm at 77 Theatre (next to Meridian Space) in Meishuguan Houjie. See full event details here

(But be warned that tickets are fast selling online, buy them here.)

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