Changing behaviours and continuing silence: sex in the post-immigration lives of mainland Chinese immigrants in Canada
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In China, reluctance to discuss sex continues to be widely observed despite the sexual revolution there. That silence generates questions about health risks in the contexts of HIV/AIDS and international migration. Based on a qualitative study of mainland Chinese immigrants in Canada, this paper explores the impacts of immigration processes on sex and sexuality. The findings reveal a gap between these individuals' changing sexual behaviours and the continuing silence on sex. Although Canada has exposed them to a new living environment that has shaped the dynamics and patterns of their sexual practices, their incomplete integration into the host society and their close connections with China as the home country mean that traditional Chinese norms continue to influence their understanding of these changes. With the increasing openness of these immigrants' sexual relationships, the obsolescence of their consciousness and knowledge of sexuality should be addressed in order to reduce their vulnerability to sexual inequalities and consequent health risks.
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