Li Yinhe: My Observation of Society

April 28, 2014
Editor: Amanda Wu
Li Yinhe: My Observation of Society
Chinese sociologist and sexologist Li Yinhe's new book titled Li Yinhe: My Observation of Society []

Chinese sociologist and sexologist Li Yinhe offers a summary of her academic standpoints in the book, Li Yinhe: My Obeservation of Society, published by the All-China Federation of Industry & Commerce Press.

Li, who earned a doctoral degree in sociology from University of Pittsburgh in the United States of America in 1988, was the first female sexologist to introduce western theories on the subject to China and to promote studies on gay male and female sexuality.

Her main academic interests have been sexual norms, homosexuality, diverse sexual behavior – including sadomasochism, and women's studies.

The book, Li Yinhe: My Observation of Society, which is divided into four parts: gender, love, preference and idea, gives a depiction of the evolution of gender-based power, the rise, development and current situation of the feminist movement, LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) rights, the tolerance of several countries towards sexual minorities as well as social phenomena caused by changes in the public attitude towards sex.

In the book, Li, as always, takes a liberal stance on the rights of sexual minorities, but she doesn't encourage people to participate in 'queer' or 'sadomasochism'-related activities.

As an activist for LGBT rights in China, Li raised the issue of legalizing same-sex marriage in 2003, 2005 and 2006 at the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), but none succeed.

Despite her failures to enact any legislation, Li is not disheartened and does not intend to give up. While enjoying her life after she retired from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Li is still positive that China will improve its stance on LGBT rights and she continues to work towards achieving this goal.

"I have to stand up and speak out about the unfair things that are happening in our society. Many people do support my opinions. I hope that in time, all of this will make a difference to the lives of China's LGBT people," said Li.

Li also said that China has made considerable improvements in decriminalizing homosexuality and reducing social discrimination. "There are gay bars now and gay rights organizations are very active. In fact, LGBT people in China often have a very positive life attitude. Many celebrities have also come out of the closet," she added.

Li said that she is lucky to live in a world with Internet and micro-blogs, because she can use them to express her opinions on public issues.

(Source: and and edited by Women of China)

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