However, even in the wake of political change and globalization, many families still held the traditional Chinese belief that women, unlike men, belonged in the home, and that their parents had the final say over whom they could marry.
But China’s 1978 “Open Door Policy,” which transitioned the country from a rigid, centrally planned economy to a global, market-based economy, exposed the Chinese people to an array of outside cultural influences.
Meanwhile, the country’s 1980 marriage law codified, for the first time, freedom to marry and gender equality.
These new shows were ways for singles to get to know each other in a fun, flirty environment.
And for those who had little dating experience, it was a model for courtship; soon, the viewing public was able to reconceptualize ideas of love, relationships and marriage.
In many ways, dating shows became a powerful way to facilitate these changes.