China's Government Is Trying To Ban Funeral Strippers

Illustrated by Isabelle Rancier.
Funerals: a time for bereavement...and strippers?

In China, the custom isn't as strange as it may seem. Performances by strippers are common at Chinese funerals, but the country's government wants to change that.

The unusual practice is "held with the goal of drawing more mourners," The Wall Street Journal explains. The issue sparked some outrage last year, when photos of an X-rated performance — showing an audience of both parents and children — at a funeral for an elderly resident of Handan, in northern Hebei province, went viral online.

In a statement last April, China's Ministry of Culture said the country's police will work to eliminate the practice. In the Handan case, investigators concluded that the performance "violated public security regulations," the Journal reports, and the investigation resulted in a fine of 70,000 yuan (about $11,300). The funeral apparently featured a team of six strippers.

The ministry's statement calls funeral stripper performances "illegal," and the Chinese government is still working to crack down on the custom. Mourning gatherings may become less entertaining, but that's probably not a bad thing.

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