We all know strippers are anywhere but in funerals, but in China — it’s especially in funerals!
But not for long, as Chinese authorities are now cracking down on the practice of some rural families hiring strippers as a form of entertainment in funerals.
Last month, the Ministry of Culture in China said they are targeting “striptease” and other “obscene, pornographic and vulgar performances” at funerals and other gatherings across Henan, Anhui, Jiangsu and Hebei provinces.
The state-run Global Times newspaper reported that through a special hotline, witnesses are encouraged to report any of these performances in exchange for a reward.
“The crowd is pushed to climax, roaring with laughter, whistling, applauding and cursing,” the report said. “As the performers saunter into the audience to jiggle their breasts and rub men’s crotches, a reminder of ‘no photographs allowed’ can occasionally be heard.”
Why the practice?
The report added that in China, the more mourners attending a funeral means a sign of respect for the dead. Thus, families are exerting extra effort to make sure many people attend the funeral of their loved ones.
One practice among rural families is paying a large sum of money to hire actors, singers, comedians — and just recently, strippers to not only draw a huge crowd but to also comfort the bereaved family and entertain the mourners.
Even weddings and temple fairs hire strippers.
An expert told the newspaper that this practice may be attributed to “fertility worship” to “convey the deceased’s wishes of being blessed with many children”.
“Therefore the erotic performance at the funeral is just a cultural atavism,” another expert said.
Oh wait! this is not the first time?
The Ministry of Culture have tried stopping the practice for over a decade, one of which happened three years ago after viral photos of funeral strippers inviting “grieving” men to join them on stage to undress them in two villages in the provinces of Hebei and Jiangsu have emerged.
Authorities have described the practice as “uncivilised” in a statement released at the time, Xinhua news agency reported.
In 2006, five striptease troupe leaders were detained in Jiangsu province.