Share This Article:

Attitudes Regarding the Market Economy in Urban China

Abstract Full-Text HTML Download Download as PDF (Size:123KB) PP. 185-190
DOI: 10.4236/sm.2012.22024    3,488 Downloads   5,836 Views   Citations
Author(s)    Leave a comment

ABSTRACT

Compared with only thirty-five years ago, today’s China is a different country. As recently as the early 1980s, despite universal poverty, there were universal, life-time employment, cheap work-place-provided housing, national healthcare, and free college education. For those who were born under communism, attitudes toward capitalism were largely negative and large disparities in income and wealth were seen as immoral and unjust. Today the state no longer assigns jobs to those who have completed their education and urban life-time employment and national healthcare are long gone. While there have been stunning improvements in living conditions, the rapid increases in housing prices, coupled with increasing unemployment and a disappearance of job security and national health care, have made ordinary people vulnerable. Because China has become one of the most unequal societies in the world in terms of income and wealth, there is also a sense of discontent among many of its citizens. Using a 2006 national survey, we explore how these changes have affected the public attitudes toward economic reform and communist rule. To our surprise, we found general agreement across different generation, education, and income-mobility groups as regards market economy, the legitimacy of profit-making and income inequality, the role and authority of the government, and the causes of poverty and inequality. The differences among generation, education, and income groups are largely in degree. We suggest that the lack of generation, income, and education differences on attitudes may be due to material benefits brought by the market economy and high economic growth.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Tsui, M. & Li, X. (2012). Attitudes Regarding the Market Economy in Urban China. Sociology Mind, 2, 185-190. doi: 10.4236/sm.2012.22024.

References

[1] Barboza, D. (2010). Changes in China could raise prices worldwide. The New York Times, 7 June 2010. URL. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/08/business/global/08wages.html
[2] Bradsher, K. (2010). For auto industry, questions about Beijing’s road ahead. The New York Times, 29 December 2010. URL. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/30/business/global/30auto.html
[3] Chinese Takeovers. (2010). The economist. 13-19 November 2010, 81-83.
[4] Dating Games. (2010). The economist. 18-31 December 2010, 145.
[5] Eckholm, E. (2007). Worker’s rights are suffering in China as manu- facturing goes capitalist. The New York Times, 22, August 2001. URL. http://www.nytimes.com/2001/08/22/world/workers-rights-are-suffering-in-china-as-manufacturing-goes-capitalist.html
[6] Gross, M. (2010). Lost in China. The New York Times, 26 December 2010. URL. http://travel.nytimes.com/2010/12/26/travel/26chongqing.html
[7] Kahn, J., & Barboza, D. (2007). As unrest rises, China broadens work- er’s rights. The New York Times, 30 June 2007. URL. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/30/world/asia/30china.html
[8] Mastel, G. (1997). The rise of the Chinese economy: The middle kingdom emerges. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe.
[9] Miller, K. (2010). Coping with China’s financial power. Foreign Affairs, July/August 2010, 96-110. URL. http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/66466/ken-miller/coping-with-chinas-financial-power.
[10] Remin University of China. (2006). Comprehensive National Survey of the Livelihood of Chinese Urban and Rural Residents. Beijing: Re- min University of China.
[11] Whyte, M., & Parish, W. (1984). Urban life in contemporary China. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

  
comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2018 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.