Chinese Community Ties to Culture

Chinese communities are thriving all over the world. They are well-integrated and contribute significantly to their new countries. Despite prejudices, they remain true to their culture.

Chinese are a unique group of people with their own distinct culture. This includes food, style, family values, language and morals. They also have a rich history of migration worldwide.


Designed to protect Chinese residents from the discrimination codified by the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, Chinatowns are still important community spaces today. They are a place where people come to shop, grab a bite to eat and catch up on news from back home.

Chinatowns provide vital life-saving networks of support, education and ethnic unity. This shared identity is a defining reason that these neighborhoods thrive even in the face of urban gentrification.

However, they are not the only places where Chinese Americans find community. Many second- and third-generation Chinese Americans run projects like the W.O.W Project in Manhattan’s Chinatown to preserve their neighborhood from gentrification, which threatens the cultural integrity of the area. These community-based efforts could help to stem the spread of anti-Asian crimes during the COVID-19 pandemic. They can also make the community more resilient to future economic challenges. For example, they can help to prevent rising rent prices from pushing out low-income residents.

Chinese Immigrants

Chinese immigrants who were unable to find work in America created self-reliant communities that became known as Chinatowns. Many settlers worked in the gold mines and others opened restaurants, laundries and other businesses. They often built a community center where they hosted cultural and social events.

The Chinese government’s orientation has shifted from trying to prevent emigration to encouraging return migration. It now focuses on stimulating investment from ethnic Chinese overseas and attracting highly skilled migrants who can contribute to China’s economic development (Zweig, 2004).

Students from mainland China are becoming more interested in studying abroad. They are no longer limited to a few areas of science or engineering, but are also choosing MBA programs and majoring in humanities and social sciences. Some of them are returning to China to take on jobs as entrepreneurs and business managers. They are viewed by the Chinese government as important sources of talent and wealth. This new wave of migrants has also drawn the attention of the world.

Chinese Culture

Chinese culture is rooted in the ancient beliefs of Buddhism, Confucianism and Daoism (also known as Taoism). In modern times, many Chinese follow a more secular approach to life.

Traditional Chinese values, called Hexie, emphasize harmony. They posit that there is a dynamic inherent in the universe which converts imbalance into balance, discord into harmony and conflict into cooperation. The pursuit of Hexie requires abiding by laws and truths.

Traditionally, Chinese society was an agrarian community, which meant that people stayed in one place for their entire lives and all knew each other well. Family and group ties are very important to the Chinese and they influence all aspects of their lives. For example, major personal decisions like career choices are generally made on a family basis. Children are heavily supervised and most teenagers don’t date or hang out with non-family members. The concept of guanxi, or social networking, plays a key role in their interactions with other people.

Chinese Education

China is one of the world’s largest education markets. China’s regulations commonly categorize K-12 education service providers as either non-profit or for-profit entities. Non-profit entities are primarily schools that provide full-time curricular education. For-profit entities include private schools and academic extracurricular tutoring.

Education in China is highly competitive. Chinese youths often compete against each other in a national exam to gain access to higher education and pursue professional career paths. The prestigious and rigorous educational system can be especially difficult for students from less privileged backgrounds to achieve.

Educational inequality is exacerbated by urban communities’ soaring income disparities, the household registration system, and education-finance policies. Neighborhood-effect theories may not adequately explain the relationship between community SES and high school entrance in China because of these unique mediating pathways. Nonetheless, the results support the positive and nonlinear relationship proposed by these theories. The findings also suggest a threshold effect in which a steeper decline in high school entrance occurs when community SES falls below a certain level.

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