The Fuqi Xiang Fallacy

John and I standing side by side
John and I have fūqī xiàng? How could anyone think we look that much alike?

You two really have fūqī xiàng (夫妻相).

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this from Chinese friends. As much as I love when people suggest my husband and I are a lucky match, a couple destined to stay together forever, fūqī xiàng leaves me puzzled. How could anyone think we look that much alike?

I could imagine why such a saying came from China, a country dominated by the Han people, who share the same black hair and eyes, and similar skin tones. With that background, it wouldn’t take much for any couple to look alike. At a minimum, they’d need the same nose and the same shaped eyes; maybe the same shaped face, if you were a stickler. But even so, the odds are good you’d find many couples with their match reflected in their faces.

Not with John and I. Maybe we have the same nose — maybe. But one nose in common does not a fūqī xiàng make. Continue reading “The Fuqi Xiang Fallacy”