Chapter 6 reviews the scholarly literature on ‘Asia_West’ and ‘intra-Asia’ marriages and studies of foreign-related marriages in China. It then analyses how Chinese_foreign marriages started to ‘resurrect’ thanks to China’s economic liberation and legal reforms in the late 1970s. The early transitional period paralleled official recognition of, and public reservation against, Chinese_foreign marriages, especially marriages involving foreign nationals. The 1990s witnessed China’s changing attitudes towards cross-Strait relations, reflecting in the proliferation of cross-Strait marriages and the rising number of Chinese_foreign marriages overseas. China’s increasing globalization in the 2000s triggered the growth in the number of foreign spouses and internationalized marriages in China, giving rise to gendered discourses and binary constructions in relation to foreign spouses of Chinese in the media. Wang concludes by summarizing the changing character of foreign-related marriages in different historical periods and argues that these marriages have begun to shape and complicate the overarching marriage landscape in China in this century.
Yi Pan and Ziyu Wang
The rapid economic growth along with high inequality has changed the principal social contradiction within China, which has been interpreted by the Chinese Communist Party in 2017 as the contradiction between the inadequate development and the ever-growing needs of the people for a better life in this ‘new era’. The response to this contradiction is to complete building a comprehensive welfare system. After presenting the development of the Chinese welfare system marked by four turning points, this chapter addresses the outcomes and problems in the ongoing reform efforts in terms of expanding and integrating social insurances and expanding the social services. The chapter also explores the moderate universalism welfare principle, which guides the current reform, and its historical, political and cultural roots. In the discussion of international social policy, the authors refer to China’s position in building a community with a shared future for humanity against the background of globalization.
Edited by Chia-Lin Chen, Haixiao Pan, Qing Shen and James J. Wang
Chia-Lin Chen, Haixiao Pan, Qing Shen and James Jixian Wang
Since the economic reform and opening-up policy initiated in 1978, changes brought about by a series of consecutive reforms in Chinese society are unparalleled in human history. In this “post-Mao era”, the urbanisation process accelerated dramatically as “a policy exploitive of the rural sector” (Chan, 1994: 97) under the Mao regime had shifted to an urban development policy that “is not simply subordinated to industrialization policy…” and “should be treated as an inevitable process of modern development…” (Chan, 1994: 104). The rate of urbanisation, which denotes the proportion of the population living in urban areas, was merely 10.6 per cent in 1949 when the People’s Republic of China was founded. Over the course of the next thirty years, this proportion rose modestly to 17.9 per cent, whereas, since then, urbanisation has rocketed, with a further steep rise occurring soon after China joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001. In 1999, the rate of urbanisation was 30.89 per cent, a strong growth of 13 per cent over 21 years. In less than 18 years, the rate of urbanisation in 2017 had risen to 58.52 per cent, a 28 percent increase, doubling the growth between 1978 and 1999 (NBSC, 1999 and 2018). Transport, either as a means to meet development needs or by itself as an economic growth strategy, has played an indispensable role in contributing to rapid urbanisation, and vice versa. The aphorism of the British economist Colin Clark (Clark, 1958) – “transport is maker and breaker of cities” – proves to be insightful to depict the interactive relationship between transport and urbanisation through a series of developmental crises and technological breakthroughs. For Chinese cities, the pattern of interaction between urbanization and transport is much more complicated than that of most advanced economies, where development of the transport infrastructure took a fairly long period of time to reach its present state. Chinese cities have been a major arena for experiments; from large-scale motorisation to public transit development, from state-led rail transit development to spawning entrepreneur-driven business ideas (such as dockless bike-sharing systems and online ride-hailing systems), all concurring and overlapping in a relatively short time and leading to dramatic urban transformation with considerable challenges for sustainabl development in contemporary China. A recently-published book, Unsustainable Transport and Transition in China by Loo (2018), specifically addresses these challenges.