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(来源:英语学习门户网站EnglishCN.com)

Over 27? Unmarried? Female? In China, you could be labelled a "leftover woman" by the state - but some professional Chinese women these days are happy being single。已经过了27岁?未婚?女性?如果这些你都符合,那在中国你就会被打上“剩女”的标签。不过如今很多中国女性白领表示:我单身我快乐。

Huang Yuanyuan is working late at her job in a Beijing radio newsroom. She's also stressing out about the fact that the next day, she'll turn 29.黄媛媛(音译)在北京的一家广播的编辑室加班至深夜。还有一个事实让她倍感压力山大:明天她就要迎来29岁了。

"Scary. I'm one year older," she says. "I'm nervous." Why? "Because I'm still single. I have no boyfriend. I'm under big pressure to get married."她说:“我觉得非常恐惧,我又老了一岁了,我很焦虑。” 为什么会恐惧焦虑?她这样回答道:“因为我还单身,我没有男朋友,我顶着巨大的结婚压力。”

Huang is a confident, personable young woman with a good salary, her own apartment, an MA from one of China's top universities, and a wealth of friends。黄小姐是一位非常自信迷人的年轻女性,工资薪水高,住在自己的公寓里,拥有中国重点大学的硕士学位,身边还有一大群朋友。

Still, she knows that these days, single, urban, educated women like her in China are called "sheng nu" or "leftover women" - and it stings。不过她也知道,在如今的中国,像她这样受过良好教育的单身都市女性,都被称为“剩女”,这个称呼让她觉得有些刺耳。

She feels pressure from her friends and her family, and the message gets hammered in by China's state-run media too。她受到来自朋友和家人的逼婚压力,而在很多中国官方媒体上,这种信息也总是会反复强调。

State-run media started using the term "sheng nu" in 2007. That same year the government warned that China's gender imbalance - caused by selective abortions because of the one-child policy - was a serious problem. National Bureau of Statistics data shows there are now about 20 million more men under 30 than women under 30.官方媒体在2007年开始使用“剩女”一词,同年政府发布报告称中国的性别不平衡现象是非常严重的社会问题。因为中国实施独生子女政策,造成很多人会进行性别选择性堕胎。根据国家统计局的数据显示,30岁以下的中国人口,男性要比女性多2000万。

"Ever since 2007, the state media have aggressively disseminated this term in surveys, and news reports, and columns, and cartoons and pictures, basically stigmatising

educated women over the age of 27 or 30 who are still single," says Leta Hong-Fincher, an American doing a sociology PhD at Tsinghua University in Beijing。正在清华大学攻读社会学博士的美国学生丽塔·洪-芬奇表示:“从2007年开始,中国媒体就开始在调查、新闻报道、专栏、动画和图片中大量使用‘剩女’ 这一术语,通常定义的是超过27岁或30岁的单身知识女性。”

Census figures for China show that around one in five women aged 25-29 is unmarried。普查数据显示,在中国25-29岁间的女性中,5人中就有1人未婚。

The proportion of unmarried men that age is higher - over a third. But that doesn't mean they will easily match up, since Chinese men tend to "marry down", both in terms of age and educational attainment。这个年龄段的未婚男性比例更高,超过三分之一,但这并不意味着他们就能轻易相配。中国的男性更喜欢“低娶”,所谓的“低”包括年龄和教育程度。

"There is an opinion that A-quality guys will find B-quality women, B-quality guys will find C-quality women, and C-quality men will find D-quality women," says Huang Yuanyuan. "The people left are A-quality women and D-quality men. So if you are a leftover woman, you are A-quality."黄媛媛这样描述这种现状:“一流男人找二流女人,二流男人找三流女人,三流男人找四流女人,剩下的就只有一流女人和四流男人。如果你是剩女,你就是一流女人。”

But it's the "A-quality" of intelligent and educated women that the government most wants to procreate, according to Leta Hong-Fincher. She cites a statement on population put out by the State Council - China's cabinet - in 2007.而根据丽塔·洪-芬奇的观点,这群“一流”的聪明知识女性,正是中国想要培养的对象。她援引了中国国务院在2007年发表的一份人口报告。

"It said China faced unprecedented population pressures, and that the overall quality of the population is too low, so the country has to upgrade the quality of the population."“报告中称中国面临着空前的人口压力,而整体人口素质偏低,又促使国家迫切需要提升人口素质。”

Some local governments in China have taken to organising matchmaking events, where educated young women can meet eligible bachelors.中国的一些地方政府开始着手安排相亲活动,未婚女性在那里遇到一些符合条件的单身汉们。

But the tendency to look down on women of a certain age who aren't married isn't exclusively an attitude promoted by the government. Chen (not her real name), who works for an investment consulting company, knows this all too well。不仅是政府方面,到某年龄段尚未婚的女性在中国社会也会遭受异样的眼光。在某投资咨询顾问公司工作的陈小姐(非真名)对此就深有感触。

 
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