1. European Social Survey
  2. City Q-Step Centre
  3. Culture & the Creative Industries
  4. Food Policy
  5. Jeremy Tunstall Global Media Research Centre
  6. The Centre for City Criminology
  7. Research on Work and Society
  8. Violence and Society
  1. Research in Culture & the Creative Industries
  2. Research students

Xintong Jia

Department of Sociology


Supervisors:  Professor Rosalind Gill and Dr Lia Litosseliti

PhD Research: The Reproduction of Gender Inequality in the Age of Postfeminism:  Exploring the sexualised female figures in China

Summary of current doctoral research

The research is about the constructions and developments of female’s gendered subjectivities through diverse media representations under the circumstance of neoliberalism and postfeminism in contemporary China.

Inspired by Foucault, I propose the sexualised women figures represented in media can be regarded as a ‘docile body’, that is, a kind of subjected and practiced body produced by discipline and is in the grip of power in society. The central research questions are: How do the process and practices of media representation work to produce ideas about what it means to be a woman? How does (male-dominated) neoliberal capitalism appropriate postfeminist ideas to sell women an image of ‘empowerment’?

Feminism is a transnational movement and China has witnessed its domestic operation. Since the 1980s, the postfeminist discourse has been broadly visible in Western countries. However, there is little agreement about the exact meaning of postfeminism. Whether postfeminist discourse can ultimately empower or disempower women remains a question. This research seeks to fill the gap between the postfeminist discourse and the sexualised female figures appeared in contemporary China’s media representation. This research aims to explore the cultural currency of the represented women figures and try to find a new female subjectivity created by the Chinese importing of ‘Western’ postfeminism.

Higher education and background

  • PhD in Sociology at City, University of London (2018-present)
  • MA in Media and Cultural Studies at Lancaster University (2016-2017)
  • Dissertation Title: Contemporary Chinese Media Representations and the Figuration of the ‘sexual-girl-child’ from 2015 to 2017

  • BA in Media and Communication Studies at China Agricultural University (2011-2015)
  • Dissertation Title: Exploring the Media Violence in a Feminist Perspective

Research Interests:

  • Media and gender
  • Foucault’s power and discourse theory
  • Female’s identity and subjectivity
  • Debates in postfeminism
  • Neoliberalism and consumption culture