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Gendering Transnational Business Spaces: Cross-Border Burmese Women Jadeite Traders in Yunnan, China

Gendering Transnational Business Spaces: Cross-Border Burmese Women Jadeite Traders in Yunnan, China As the world’s primary source of top-grade jadeite, Myanmar is the home to a thriving black market in which raw stones are smuggled from the Kachin State across the border into China. Among the people of different nationalities and ethnicities facilitating the cross-border trade and networks, Burmese women are increasingly highlighted through popular short videos on a video-focused Chinese social media application, Douyin. These scripted popular short videos show bargains and negotiations between Chinese businessmen and Burmese women jadeite traders, while highlighting Burmese women’s sexuality. In order to understand their representations in these short videos, this paper adopts digital ethnography approaches to capture the cultural expectations placed on Burmese women jadeite traders in China. I argue that these videos (re)produce gendered expectations of these women traders by amplifying their femininity, physicality, romantic availability, and representation as ‘Third World subjects’ to affirm Chinese masculinity and nationalism. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology Taylor & Francis

Gendering Transnational Business Spaces: Cross-Border Burmese Women Jadeite Traders in Yunnan, China

The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology , Volume 24 (4): 19 – Aug 8, 2023
19 pages

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References (40)

Publisher
Taylor & Francis
Copyright
© 2023 The Australian National University
ISSN
1740-9314
eISSN
1444-2213
DOI
10.1080/14442213.2023.2223172
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

As the world’s primary source of top-grade jadeite, Myanmar is the home to a thriving black market in which raw stones are smuggled from the Kachin State across the border into China. Among the people of different nationalities and ethnicities facilitating the cross-border trade and networks, Burmese women are increasingly highlighted through popular short videos on a video-focused Chinese social media application, Douyin. These scripted popular short videos show bargains and negotiations between Chinese businessmen and Burmese women jadeite traders, while highlighting Burmese women’s sexuality. In order to understand their representations in these short videos, this paper adopts digital ethnography approaches to capture the cultural expectations placed on Burmese women jadeite traders in China. I argue that these videos (re)produce gendered expectations of these women traders by amplifying their femininity, physicality, romantic availability, and representation as ‘Third World subjects’ to affirm Chinese masculinity and nationalism.

Journal

The Asia Pacific Journal of AnthropologyTaylor & Francis

Published: Aug 8, 2023

Keywords: Gender; Transnational Migration; Myanmar; China; Social Media; Jade

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