If you use China’s most popular social chat app, WeChat, you might have seen a lot of strange references to ‘chicken soup’:

Clearly, ‘chicken soup’ is not chicken soul in Chinese netizen vernacular. So what are people really talking about?

In 1993, a book series called Chicken Soup for the Soul  launched in the U.S. The books were about making people feel good and were filled with heart-warming and cheesy motivational essays. Over the years, hundreds of them were sold. There were different variations of Chicken Soup books too, like Chicken Soup for the Woman Golfer’s Soul or Chicken Soup for the Soul: Parenthood.

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Eva Xiao

Eva Xiao is a tech reporter based in Shanghai. Contact her at eva.xiao@technode.com or evawxiao (wechat & twitter).