This study focuses on the intellectual debate over #MeToo in China provoked by an article written by a well-known Chinese scholar and public intellectual Liu Yu. Raising such countervailing issues as women's supposed complicity in sexual harassment and the drawbacks of digital activism in comparison with legal action, Liu's article marked a crucial moment in the public awareness and discussion of #MeToo and digital activism in China in 2018. By analyzing the critical responses to Liu's argumentations, we examined the discursive impact of these critical efforts to destabilize Liu's hegemonic reading of the sexual harassment culture in China. We show how Liu's critics offered a compelling defense of #MeToo, deconstructed enduring gendered myths, and had a significant impact in terms of reclaiming feminism in China. We argue further that the critics' intellectual and deliberative efforts exemplify China's local struggles in the global #MeToo movement and feminist activism.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Language and Linguistics
- Linguistics and Language