Domestic Ties, Household Bondage, and Trading of People in North China

Matchmakers are commonly considered romantic figures right out of Fiddler on the Roof. The classic archetype is of a loquacious, respected elder, usually female, who knits families together via matrimony.

Johanna Ransmeier, a new assistant professor of history, has discovered that, at least in turn-of-the-twentieth-century China, matchmakers played a less wholesome role.