Adapted with permission from Hug China.
Four female students from Wuhan University in Hubei province demonstrated on February 14 to call for respect for sex workers in China.
One student held up a pair of underpants as a metaphor for the Big Underpants building in Beijing, i.e. the headquarters of China Central Television (CCTV), which has been pejoratively called “CCAV” (AV being adult video) by Chinese netizens.
The four students held pictures of blurred female faces to their heads, which they called “mosaics.” The two placards in the above picture read:
Sex jobs are also jobs; sex workers also have dignity.
CCAV needs big underpants; sex workers need mosaics.
The performance art has won the praise of Chinese netizens. Here are the two top comments from NetEase:
Sex workers are by far cleaner and more dignified than CCAV.
What Big Underpants cover up is much dirtier.
Guangdong police arrested 67 people and shut down 12 entertainment venues in a massive raid late Sunday night after CCTV revealed several hotels in Dongguan — China’s “sex capital” — were involved in illegal sex trade.
Both the CCTV program and the nationwide crackdown on prostitution have inspired heated debate, with some human rights advocates calling for the legalization of the world’s oldest occupation in China.
This isn’t the first crackdown on prostitution in China, or the media’s first time reporting about it. But what was particularly galling was that sex workers were exposed without reservation, and some were even shown naked in footage that aired across the country.
Wuhan students perform action art to protest… (Hug China) (Image via Icpress)