S-Space College of Social Sciences (사회과학대학) Institute for Social Development and Policy Research (사회발전연구소) Development and Society Development and Society Vol.29 No.1/2 (2000)
Economic Privatism and New Patterns of Inequality in Post-Mao China
- Chang, Kyung-Sup
- Issue Date
- Institute for Social Development and Policy Research, Center for Social Sciences, Seoul National University
- Development and Society, Vol.29 No.2, pp. 23-54
- Economic reforms in socialist and former socialist countries have required grassroots to undergo fundamental and drastic changes in the basic conditions of work and family life. Amid the rapid transition from the socialist collective economy to the market-oriented private economy, people in increasing numbers have been trapped in a deadlock situation where they are neither materially protected by the socialist arrangements for unconditional employment and subsistence, nor functionally integrated into the new system of market-based division of labor and commodity exchange. In rural China, this dilemma seems especially problematic for those people who live in families without sufficient political influence or production assets, who are women or live in woman-headed households, and who do not have sufficient luck, courage, or talent to transform themselves into successful migrant entrepreneurs. The emergence of the economic disadvantages suffered by these groups has been structurally linked to the reactivation of the peasant family as an independent, private economic unit for whose economic activities the state neither exercises direct institutional control nor assumes political responsibility.
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