• Representations of Chinese gendered and racialised bodies in contemporary media sites

      Pang, Bonnie; Hill, Joanne; Western Sydney University; University of Bedfordshire (Taylor and Francis, 2018-06-16)
      Social media are influential sociocultural forces that construct and transmit information about gender, health and bodies to young people in the digital age. In health and physical activity, Chinese people are often represented and positioned differently to other (minority) ethnic groups. For example, Black young people are often understood as having low academic motivations and aspirations but as ‘natural’ athletes; in contrast, Chinese young people, seen as the ‘model minority’ who excel in STEM subjects, are fragile, reserved and disinterested in physical movements. These public forms of representation may sit in opposition to the young people’s embodied identity. When these misrepresentations are internalised, issues such as micro-aggression and racism may have an impact on Chinese young people’s health and wellbeing. This paper aims to examine how Chinese bodies are gendered and racialised in contemporary social media sites (e.g. Google News, LiveJournal, Medium, Wordpress). Drawing on critical discourse analysis and Foucault’s concepts of normalisation and discursive practice, the paper will problematise the often taken-for-granted gendered and racialised stereotypes related to Chinese physicality and health on social media sites. Implications for developing future research and teaching resources in critical media health literacy for young people on issues related to gender and equity will be provided. The results affect how we understand, represent, and discuss Chinese (young) people on social media sites, thereby how Chinese young people engage, construct, and perform their embodied identities in Western, English speaking societies.
    • Rethinking the ‘aspirations’ of Chinese girls within and beyond Health and Physical Education and physical activity in Greater Western Sydney

      Pang, Bonnie; Hill, Joanne (Routledge, 2016-08-09)
      This paper aims to explore young Chinese girls’ aspirations and ideal environments for engagement in Health and Physical Education (HPE) and physical activity (PA) in Greater Western Sydney. Interviews are used to elicit these girls’ perceptions of their future and ideal environments in relation to HPEPA. Their data offer insights into key influences regarding what is thinkable, desirable and achievable in their HPEPA environments. Results showed dimensions of environments, such as social and pedagogical aspects, that are conducive to these girls’ aspirations in HPEPA (e.g. social support from parents, and functional built environment for HPE). This paper aligns with a strengths-based approach to understanding and recognising young Chinese girls’ perceived aspirations within their socio-cultural environment. In doing so, we discuss how feminism and femininity are positioned from a Chinese perspective that may provide alternative views to a post-feminist panorama in promoting advancement of all young girls in HPEPA. Results invite us to take into account some of the girls’ ambivalence towards being an ‘autonomous’ and ‘dependent’ modern Chinese young girl. This paper calls for a rethinking of how aspirations that shape young people’s future in HPEPA in much of the contemporary Western world are conceptualised in academic research.