STRIPPERS are being hired to dance at funerals in China as the appetite for good fortune extends even into the afterlife.
The practice of inviting scantily clad women to attend funerals in China has become popular enough for the government to launch a crackdown.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the point of inviting strippers is to attract large crowds to a funeral, which indicates good fortune in the afterlife.
“It’s to give them face,” one villager said.
“Otherwise no one would come.”
Pictures of a funeral in northern Hebei province last month showed a dancer removing her bra as parents and children watched. Other routines have reportedly involved women performing with snakes.
During a 2006 investigation, state-run media CCTV found about a dozen troupes offering stripper services in every village in the country. They were putting on as many as 20 shows a month.
Stripping is illegal in China but performances have gained popularity in the countryside because of a general lack of other cultural events.
On Thursday, the Ministry of Culture released a statement that the government would work with police to stop the “obscene” practice.
In the last several months, people who have returned to their rural homes for funerals have complained on social media about lewd shows, remarking that troupes hired to play dirges suddenly changed their tune and began to peel off their clothes.
The ministry cited a performance by six strippers at a funeral in the northern province of Hebei and a lewd show by three performers at a funeral in the eastern province of Jiangsu. Those responsible for vulgar acts will be punished, it said.
“Such illegal operations have disrupted local entertainment markets and corrupted social mores,” the ministry said.