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hakka: Hakka women (fwd)
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---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 03 Sep 1997 07:24:59 -0700
From: "K. Dudley" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Hakka <email@example.com>
Subject: hakka: Hakka women
I am not a Hakka woman by birth, but consider myself just a tiny little
bit Hakka since I learned (and love) the language and worked and lived
with Hakka people for 6-7 years in Taiwan. In general, Hakka women there
seem less reticent than Hoklo women. I think they are more independent
because they have always worked at home and outside the home - maybe not
as dependent on their husbands for their living? We lived with a Hakka
farm couple who worked together, even though each had his/her special
areas of work on the farm. Still I think the husband sees and values the
hard work of his wife in this way. He also did more of the housework than
I was expecting.
As a woman in a non-traditional role (as a pastor) I found more ready
acceptance and encouragement among the Hakka Christians than among the
Mandarin or Taiwanese speaking church members. One reason is that
competent women are commonplace among the Hakka - they are not so much a
threat to the men. Also, of course, church leadership is lacking among
the Hakka of Taiwan, since so very few are Christian, and I think when it
came to preaching at a church without a pastor, they didn't care whether
I was male or female.
Hakka women are not "liberated" in the western sense of the word, since
most Hakka women I knew worked all the time, while their husbands enjoyed
more leisure. Why do you think that pouring tea is a man's enjoyment?
Many women work while caring for children, and do almost all of the
housework as well. Still their attitude is one of independence. Fierce?
Aggressive? I don't think so, unless you are expecting a meek lady with
no confidence. You don't push Hakka women around, to be sure!
In Taiwan, it is said that Hakka families do not want a Hoklo
daughter-in-law, but Hoklo families are glad to have a hard-working Hakka
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