Rethinking the Making of the Chinese Working Class after 1949
Visiting Scholar Talks
Apr 6, 2021 | 9:00 AM
Lin Chaochao | Associate Research Fellow, Department of History, Fudan University
Elizabeth Perry | Henry Rosovsky Professor of Government, Harvard University; Director, Harvard-Yenching Institute
Talk will be held via Zoom
Registration required: https://harvard.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_5sASphqhv6BkbvE
The year 1949 marked a watershed in Chinese working-class history. With rapid industrialization, the policy inclination of the state brought great changes to all aspects of the working-class: their size and composition, job security, labor insurance, and the housing, medical care, education and cultural benefits they can enjoy. Because of the relationship of production and exploitation which is different from the classical class theory, the real existence of the working class under the planned system is often questioned. Researchers are more likely to regard it as the class shaped by politics than the class subject with independent consciousness. This talk is not only a reflection on the theoretical logic of class formation, but also a reflection on the real historical experience of the Chinese working class. Based on the discussion of several controversial issues, this study would like to find out the pattern and the path of the Chinese working-class formation after 1949.