Viewpoint

12.21.18

A Look Back at China in 2018

Kyle Hutzler
In 2018, the outlook for China regarding its politics, economy, and relationship with the United States darkened considerably. The removal of presidential term limits and Xi Jinping’s interactions with the Trump administration prompted rare...

Conversation

11.09.18

Forty Years on, Is China Still Reforming?

Carl Minzner, Aaron Halegua & more
In late October, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the “Reform and Opening Up” policy, China’s Chairman Xi Jinping visited the southern metropolis of Shenzhen, the first major laboratory for the Party’s post-Mao economic reforms. Like his...

Books

04.21.17

A New Deal for China’s Workers?

Cynthia Estlund
China’s labor landscape is changing, and it is transforming the global economy in ways that we cannot afford to ignore. Once-silent workers have found their voice, organizing momentous protests, such as the 2010 Honda strikes, and demanding a better deal. China’s leaders have responded not only with repression but with reforms. Are China’s workers on the verge of a breakthrough in industrial relations and labor law reminiscent of the American New Deal?In A New Deal for China’s Workers? Cynthia Estlund views this changing landscape through the comparative lens of America’s twentieth-century experience with industrial unrest. China’s leaders hope to replicate the widely shared prosperity, political legitimacy, and stability that flowed from America’s New Deal, but they are irrevocably opposed to the independent trade unions and mass mobilization that were central to bringing it about. Estlund argues that the specter of an independent labor movement, seen as an existential threat to China’s one-party regime, is both driving and constraining every facet of its response to restless workers.China’s leaders draw on an increasingly sophisticated toolkit in their effort to contain worker activism. The result is a surprising mix of repression and concession, confrontation and cooptation, flaws and functionality, rigidity and pragmatism. If China’s laborers achieve a New Deal, it will be a New Deal with Chinese characteristics, very unlike what workers in the West achieved in the last century. Estlund’s sharp observations and crisp comparative analysis make China’s labor unrest and reform legible to Western readers. —Harvard University Press{chop}

Walmart Workers Launch Wildcat Strikes Across China

Yuan Yang
Financial Times
The strike has realised the Communist party’s fear of co-ordinated cross-country labour unrest.

Labor Unrest Grows in China, Even in the Historic Heartlands of Revolution

Hannah Beech
Time
The coal mining regions of Jiangxi, made famous by socialist propaganda, are today riven with labor disputes.

Three Labour Rights Leaders Detained In China As Worker Unrest Grows

Neil Connor
Telegraph
Activist detentions follow a growth in discontent among workers affected by China's stalling economy...

China’s Workers Stumble as Factories Stall

CHUN HAN WONG
Wall Street Journal
As factories run out of money and construction projects idle, China sees a rise in unrest.

China Labor Activists Say Facing Unprecedented Intimidation

Alexandrea Hearney
Reuters
The number of strikes more than doubled in 2014 to 1,378 from 656 the year before, according to China Labor Bulletin, a Hong Kong-based advocacy group. April saw the biggest strike in decades, when about 40,000 employees of Adidas and Nike supplier...

China Shocked by Fatal Riot in Madagascar

Didi Tang
Huffington Post
"We hope the Madagascar government will take necessary measures to properly handle the attack at the Morondava sugar plant and to erase the ill impact this incident has brought to the country's international image and its ability to...