Li Yinhe (李银河) is considered China's first female sociologist on sex issues. Born in Beijing in 1952, Li is currently a researcher and mentor of doctorates with the Institute of Sociology at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Li was born on February 4, 1952 in Beijing. She studied in the Shanxi University from 1974 to 1977. After graduation she became an editor at the government newspaper Guangming Daily, then a researcher at Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. She married Wang Xiaobo in 1980. She studied in the United States of America In 1982 and obtained a Ph.D. in sociology from University of Pittsburgh in 1988. Afterwards she worked as a post-doctoral, then as an instructor at Peking University. In 1992 she became a professor at the Institute of Sociology at Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Her main academic interests are sexual norms, homosexuality and women's studies in contemporary China.
Li announced on Dec. 18, 2014 that she had been in a relationship with a transgender man for 17 years after her husband died.
Li Yinhe has been active in calling for greater tolerance for nonconventional sexual activities in China. She thinks the country is undergoing a de facto sexual revolution, and encourages people to re-examine traditional attitudes towards sexual promiscuity and homosexuality. She proposes decriminalization of orgies and prostitution (both currently illegal in China). She also believes that monogamy is a personal decision made between a couple, and should not be enforced by law or social pressure.
As a member of the national committee of Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), Li had submitted proposals to legalize same-sex marriages in 2003, 2005 and 2006. None have succeeded so far.
She was a keynote speaker at the 2006 International Conference on LGBT Human Rights in Montreal.
Li also publicly speaks about other issues of social justice, such as the growing urban-rural divide in China.
《中国人的性爱与婚姻》 Sexuality and Marriage in China, Henan People's Press,1991.
《他们的世界 - 中国男同性恋群落透视》Their World: a Study of Homosexuality in China, co-authored, Cosmos Press, Hong Kong, 1992; Shanxi People's Press, 1993.
《生育与中国村落文化》Procreation and Chinese Village Culture, Oxford University Press, Hong Kong, 1993; Chinese Social Science Press, 1994
《性社会学》Human Sexuality, translator, Henan People's Press, 1994.
《中国婚姻家庭及其变迁》Changing Chinese Marriage and the Family, Heilongjiang People's Press, 1995.
《中国女性的性与爱》Sexuality and Love of Chinese Women, Oxford University Press, Hong Kong, 1996.
《女性权力的崛起》Rising Power of the Women, Chinese Social Science Press,1997.
《中国女性的感情与性》Sexuality and Love of Chinese Women, China Today Press, 1998.
《同性恋亚文化》Subculture of Homosexuality, China Today Press, 1998.
《虐恋亚文化》Subculture of Sadomas, China Today Press, 1998.