level 3

The Chinese obsession with the growth and development of the post-1980's singleton generations is now finding surprising optimistic signs, unfolded by a recent scientific research...

独生子女[1]人群在行为模式[2]有何特点?该问题近日成为学界[3]关注焦点。1个多月前,澳大利亚(Australia)学者在《科学》("Science")上发表论文,将其描述为"不信任人、不可靠、不敢冒险、不愿竞争、悲观[4]的个体"。最新一期《科学》杂志上刊发[5]同济大学(Tongji University, Shanghai)学者赵旭东(Zhao Xudong)、美国大学伯克利(Berkeley University)学者合作完成的文章《中国"小皇帝"显现的成功信号》(Signs of success in China's 'little emperors')。



What are the characteristics of the behavior patterns of singleton children? This question has become a focus of academic circles lately. Over one month ago, Australian scholars published an article on 'Science' describing singletons as "non-trustable, unreliable, have no courage to take chances, unable to compete and pessimistic individuals." The newest edition of "Science" journal published an article written collaborately by Zhao Xudong from Tongji University (Shanghai) and a scholar from Berkeley, called "China's 'little emperors' display signs of success".

Zhao Xudong points out that in the recent decades China's scholars have studied the topic of singletons. While mental problems in singletons were found, many advantages were also discovered. For example, singletons have an independent character and they get along quite good with other people. Among the post-1990 generation of singletons who are in university, singletons adjust better to the campus environment compared to student with siblings, and have good relations with companions and teachers.

Zhao Xudong believes that this research proves that in Chinese society, households and even among singletons themselves, there are misconceptions and prejudice about single children. Consequently, singletons try to put efforts to avoid the problems that everybody predicts for them. This even brings about positive factors in the psychological development of singletons. Zhao thinks that this data illustrates that researchers shouldn't employ arguments of cause and effect simplistically.     

[1] 独生子女 dú shēng zǐnǚ - single children

[2] 行为模式 xíngwéi móshì - behavior patters

[3] 学界 xué jiè - academic circle

[4] 悲观 bēiguān - pessimistic

[5] 刊发 kānfā - publish

[6] 心理健康 xīnlǐ jiànkāng - mental health

[7] 独立性 dúlì xìng - independent character

[8] 合群性 héqún xìng - the ability to get along with other people

[9] 偏见 piānjiàn - prejudice

[10] 因果 yīn guǒ - cause and effect