More than 70 percent of divorces filed in China last year were initiated by women, The South China Morning Post reported, citing the Supreme People’s Court. In most filings, incompatibility was given as the major reason; 15 percent cited domestic violence.
However, a smaller number of divorces appear to be shams resulting from a quirk in Chinese real estate law. Some cities limit the number of properties a married couple can own. By legally divorcing, a couple can buy more real estate in some of the world’s most expensive cities.
Experts said the state’s focus on preventing divorce stems from a Confucian belief that a stable society is made up of complete families.
“Only through thousands of harmonious family units can an entire society achieve harmony,” said Mr. Liu, the Lianyungang official.
The Chinese government has regulated many aspects of private family life, including religion and pregnancy.
“Marriage and family are seen as a stabilizing force, and the government wants to keep men and women in marriages,” said Leta Hong Fincher, author of “Betraying Big Brother: The Feminist Awakening in China.”
Chinese internet users were quick to criticize the divorce quizzes after a copy of Lianyungang’s was posted on Weibo, a popular microblogging site, by the city’s Civic Affairs Bureau.