Connexions Resource Centre
Focus on China
Recent & Selected Articles
- This is a small sampling of articles related to education and children in the Connexions Online Library. For more articles, books, films, and other resources, check the Connexions Library Subject Index, especially under topics such as
- Chinese neocolonialism in Africa (September 7, 2017)
China has literally invaded Africa with its investors, traders, lenders, builders, developers, labourers and who knows what else. The fancy phrase for that is win-win cooperation. The "cooperation" has opened up Africa as a source of raw materials for China and a dumping ground for cheap Chinese manufactured goods. It is Chinese neocolonialism.
- Class and class struggle in China today (June 29, 2017)
An examination of the transformed economy in China and the consequent changes in class relations, and how the Communist Party has managed to maintain its rule.
- Striking back in the "world's factory" (January 3, 2017)
A review of Hao Ren, Eli Friedman and Zhongjin Li (editors), China on Strike: Narratives of Workers' Resistance, which gives a history of labour struggles of Chinese migrant workers.
- China's Climate of Repression (September 1, 2016)
With secret trials and lengthy prison sentences imposed on human rights lawyers after forced and humiliating "confessions," the abduction of Hong Kong booksellers under circumstances that remain obscure, and new legislation that sharply restricts the work of independent organizations, the climate of repression in China is clearly sharpening.
- The Life and Resistance of a Chinese Worker (July 15, 2016)
Under China's labour management system, independent unionism is strictly banned, and the state's official trade union body monopolizes worker representation. That means that all of Chinas 806,498,521 workers are barred from forming independent organizations to agitate for their interests -- in an economy where the poorest 25 percent of households own just 1 percent of the countrys total wealth, and where long hours, safety hazards, and authoritarian management define life in the factories. This official antagonism has not stopped the emergence of workers' resistance. The number of strikes has been increasing over the past two decades, and as Eli Friedman wrote last year, "on a typical day anywhere from half a dozen to several dozen strikes are likely taking place."
- The Guangdong Six and the rule of law (of value): Preliminary theses on the December 3 crackdown (January 6, 2016)
Information about the December 3, 2014 crackdown on Chinese labour activists is now widely available in English and several other languages, but there has been little satisfactory analysis of its significance -- in relation to business as usual in China, to comparable situations in other countries, or to workers' struggles as such.
- Anger over China's Deadly Workplaces after Warehouse Explosion (September 2, 2015)
A series of chemical explosions on August 12, 2015 at a warehouse in the northern city of Tianjin is shining a spotlight on dangerous workplace conditions and precarious employment relations in China.
- China: Workers Rising? (September 1, 2015)
Book review of Lu Zhang's Inside China's Automobile Factories: The Politics of Labor and Worker Resistance and Eli Friedman's Insurgency Trap: Labor Politics in Postsocialist China
- In China's Inner Mongolia, mining spells misery for traditional herders (April 17, 2015)
China's relentless drive for minerals is wreaking havoc on pastoral lifestyles.
- Tianjin, China: a village 'land grab' protest spells trouble for the Communist state (April 11, 2015)
Rising anger by China's dispossessed (those displaced from their homes, villages and farms to make way for expanding cities and infrastructure) is posing a threat to the ruling regime. At the root of the problem is the state's inability to tackle endemic official corruption and deliver justice to its citizens.
- Dagong Diary, Part 2: Proper Hiring Begins (April 4, 2015)
The following is part 2 of a seven part series recording a short excursion into the lives of dagongzai and dagongmei at the beginning of Chinas working year.
- Dagong Diary, Part 1: Job Hunting (March 25, 2015)
Part 1 of a seven-part series recording a short excursion into the lives of dagongzai and dagongmei at the beginning of Chinas working year.
- Four years later, still a graveyard of Chinese youth (February 5, 2015)
In 2014, on the eve of China's national day celebrations, scenes recalling those of four years ago appeared in Chinese headlines. Foxconn became known to the world four years ago when thirteen of its young workers jumped to their deaths in quick succession.
- The Chinese Working Class in the Global Capitalist Crisis (2015)
By 2012, there were upwards of 100,000 incidents of popular unrest per year, ranging from strikes to riots to confrontations with local authorities over rural land seizures and real estate development. 2014 saw the highest number of strikes (12,000) ever, quite outside the control of the All-China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU), the discredited state-sponsored union. The regime has thus far been successful in keeping these struggles dispersed and localized, aimed at local authorities rather than the central government. Environmental destruction, pollution and health hazards are also increasingly at issue.
- On China's 1989 Tiananmen Upheaval (2015)
The bourgeois media falsely portray the events in the spring of 1989 as a movement for capitalist counterrevolution under the banner of Western-style "democracy." The social explosion was triggered by protests initiated by students in Beijing's Tiananmen Square, which increasingly drew in groups of workers and spread throughout the country. Far from seeking a return to capitalism, Chinese workers overwhelmingly directed their anger at the sharply rising economic inequalities, rampant corruption and inflation encouraged by Dengs program of "building socialism with capitalist methods."
- The Margins and the Center: For a New History of the Cultural Revolution (November 10, 2014)
Repost of an informative reflection on the lessons to be learned from China's "Cultural Revolution" in light of China's grim political situation circa 2014, centered on a review of Yiching's Wu's pathbreaking new book, Cultural Revolution at the Margins.
- The new strikes in China (July 28, 2014)
An article by "friends of gongchao" describes the development of strikes in China in recent years as well as the strike at Yue Yuen shoe factories in Dongguan, South China, in April 2014.
- Biggest Strike In China's History Enters 6th Day: Police Arrested Organizers, Workers Battle SWAT Troops (April 20, 2014)
The largest strike in China's history has entered the sixth day, defying state attempts to repress workers struggling against economic and social injustice. Police arrested several organizers of the strikers at the Yue Yuen factory, which produces shoes for Nike and Adidas.
- China: Mass protests challenge polluters (April 7, 2014)
In spite of a media blackout, protests in the Chinese city of Maoming against a PX (paraxylene) plant have proceeded for the past week. In March 2014 a thousand citizens took to the streets in protest, followed a few days later by 20,000 occupying the area around the government building.
- China censors reports about elite's hidden funds (January 24, 2014)
Access to the websites of Le Monde, The Guardian, Global Mail, El País and Süddeutsche Zeitung were blocked in China after they and other international media reported the results of research into the accounts held by members of the Chinese elite in offshore tax havens. The entire Chinese Internet also went down for several hours after these reports appeared online.
- "ChinaLeaks" Stories Censored in Mainland China (January 22, 2014)
Chinese authorities move aggressively to block online access to news reports exposing the secrecy-cloaked offshore holdings of Chinas political and financial elites.
- How we did Offshore Leaks China (January 21, 2014)
A multinational team of journalists spent months combing through secret tax haven records revealing offshore holdings of Chinas rich and powerful.
- Leaked Records Reveal Offshore Holdings of China's Elite (January 21, 2014)
Close relatives of China's top leaders have held secretive offshore companies in tax havens that helped shroud the Communist elite's wealth, a leaked cache of documents reveals.
- Resistance in China Today (November 1, 2012)
Cases of resistance in China continue to grow.
- Resistance in China Today (November 1, 2012)
Cases of Resistance in China continue to grow. Protests both large and small are extremely frequent. These range from workers protests against unpaid wages and demands for labor rights to protests against corrupt officials and environmental abuses. While these struggles have often been brought to a swift end through repression, they have also frequently led to protestors being granted concessions.
- A Marxist History of the World part 78: The First Chinese Revolution (June 4, 2012)
In 1927, the Chinese nationalists smashed the country's first working-class revolutionary movement a defeat that would shape the whole subsequent history of China.Counterfire
- A Marxist History of the World part 63: The Rape of China (February 20, 2012)
Neil Faulkner looks at the impact of western imperialism's repeated and bloody attempts to control the wealth of China
- China's capitalism and the crisis (January 9, 2012)
Coupled with spectacular growth rates since the late 1970s, Chinas soft landing and apparent rapid recovery from the crisis appear to support claims made by some on the right and the left that the 2008 recession has been a catalyst for the core of capitalism shifting to the East and setting in motion a change in global geopolitics.
- China in Revolt (2012)
Few in the West are aware of the drama unfolding in todays epicenter of global labor unrest. A scholar of China exposes its tumultuous labor politics and their lessons for the Left.
- The Whole World is Watching (December 26, 2011)
Thousands of villagers at Wukan, in Chinas Guangdong province, are protesting the theft of their communal land by a corrupt local government in collusion with developers.
- Auto Industry Strikes in China (October 26, 2010)
Strikes in China are nothing new, but the recent strike wave was remarkable in at least three respects: the amount of concessions granted to workers; the degree of publicity it initially received in the Chinese media; and the prospects for showcase union reform that it has helped push onto the agenda.
- Wildcat Strikes in China (June 17, 2010)
- A Chinese Alternative? Interpreting the Chinese New Left Politically (June 6, 2010)
In China, the terms 'left' and 'right' or 'radical' and 'conservative' produce somewhat different associations in the popular mind than what we are used to in the West. While in most capitalist countries 'left' and 'right' are understood largely in economic terms, in China these concepts tend to be deeply entangled within a framework defined by the state, the Communist Party, and nationalism. As a result, Chinese political debates have tended to presume a rigid dichotomy between 'left-wing' state socialism and 'right-wing' capitalist liberal democracy.
- Hospital pays compensation over 'racism' death (March 31, 2010)
Harinder Veriah's death helped to expose an ugly truth in Hong Kong: that racism is a serious problem. A report "Hong Kong's big dirty little secret" acknowledged that racism was so ingrained that derogatory terms for ethnic minorities such as gwei lo ("ghost people") for whites and hak gwai or ("black ghost") for blacks were barely noticed.
- Berlin Twitter Wall website blocked just days after its launch (November 4, 2009)
Reporters Without Borders deplores the fact that the Chinese authorities blocked the Berlin Twitter Wall website (www.berlintwitterwall.com) just days after its launch.
- Volunteer Translators Wanted - English to Chinese (September 4, 2009)
Connexions, an independent non-profit research organization and information clearinghouse based in Toronto, Canada, seeks volunteer translators to translate articles, and terms in our subject index, from English to Chinese, and from English to other languages.
- China's Disposable Labor (May 1, 2009)
The global financial crisis has begun to take its toll in China, with a rapid decline in Chinas exports. In Guangdong province where the export processing zones house 20 million workers, tens of thousands of migrant workers have been sacked. By comparing various estimates one can conclude that nationally by the beginning of 2009 between four and nine million migrant workers have returned home. Millions more will stay home after the Chinese New Year holiday.
- China Imposes Yet More Restrictions on Journalists (April 16, 2009)
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) condemns instructions to media issued by Chinaâs Prison Bureau and Central Propaganda Department that they must only report information distributed through official channels.
- Support Builds for Charter 08: Manifesto for Human Rights and Democratic Reform in China (February 9, 2009)
China Right's Network panel discussion on Charter 08, a manifesto for human rights and democratic reform in China.
- Connexions Information Sharing Services - Wikipedia Article - Chinese text (2009)
- The New Chinese Nationalism (September 1, 2008)
Corporate globalization has been remarkably successful in driving down wages and the welfare of working people across the world. Resistance to this is necessary and inevitable, hence the birth of the anti-globalization movement. The movement is vastly heterogeneous, but internationalist aspirations are strongly visible.
- Inclusion or Exclusion - Chinese Text (August 10, 2008)
- Race and Racism in China
Discrimination against the minority ethnic groups in contemporary China remains significant.
- China in the Contemporary World Dynamic of Accumulation and Class Struggle (2005)
The Chinese ruling elite is riding the whirlwind precisely because its own necessary reforms are quite visibly setting in motion social processes that could completely overwhelm it, namely a working-class and peasant insurrection which would necessarily assume a truly socialist content.
- Abusive Conditions as China Goes Capitalist (November 1, 2004)
The second meeting of the 10th National Peoples Congress, held in March 2004, made some amendments to the Constitution. The clause citizens legitimate private property will not be violated has been added to further defend private property rights and inheritance rights.
- The Chinese Working Women's Network (November 1, 2004)
There is no doubt that China is growing rapidly in importance in the global economy. China has now surpassed the United States as the largest destination in the world for foreign investment. While many U.S. businesses (and other multinationals) look eagerly to both the large Chinese market and the very low wages of Chinese workers, the U.S. labor movement has been focused on stopping the flow of U.S. production and jobs to China.
- Abandoning the Public Interest - Chinese (Simplified) Text (2001)
- Transnational Capital and the State in China: Partners in Exploitation (1998)
The destruction of job and income security, the sacking of tens of millions of workers, and the withdrawal of government subsidies and protection for local industry serves the interests of a ruling elite that is in partnership with transnational capital.
- Execution Day in Zhengzhou (1991)
A first-hand account of an execution day in China.
- The Capital Punishment Debate - Chinese text (November 16, 1984)
- Rights and Liberties - Chinese text (1984)
- Articles by Karl Marx on China 1853-1860
China was, at this time, in upheaval. It was the most populous region in the world (400 million people in 1834). The "Celestial Empire" had long operated with trade surpluses, but by the 1840s, serious trade deficits plagued China. The first European-Chinese conflict (The Opium War) began in 1839 and ended with the 1842 Treaty of Nanking. During this period, famines wracked the land. It is estimated maybe 14 million people died in 1849, and another 20 million between 1854 and 1860.
At the same time, the Taiping rebellion broke out in 1850 and attacked the status quo Confucianist Manchu Dynasty -- which had ruled since 1644. The rebellion was based in social revolutionary ideas of equality and was popular among the masses. It abolished private property, established sexual equality, and banned drugs (from alcohol to opium). By 1853, it dominated much of SE China.
- Sources Wikipedia Article - Chinese (2008)
Selected Websites and Organizations
- This is a small sampling of organizations and websites concerned with education and children in the Connexions Directory. For more organizations and websites, check the Connexions Directory Subject Index, especially under topics such as
Books, Films and Periodicals
- This is a small sampling of books related to education and children in the
Connexions Online Library. For more books and other resources, check the Connexions Library
Subject Index, especially under topics such as
- Broken Images
Essays on Chinese Culture and Politics
Author: Leys, Simon
Essays on modern Chinese culture and politics.
- The Chairman's New Clothes
Mao and the Cultural Revolution
Author: Leys, Simon
Analyzes the Chinese "cultural revolution" as a power struggle through which Mao Zedong sought to regain control of the party.
- China Mao or never
New Internationalist September 2004
A look at the communist government China and the people's dream of free speech.
- China on Strike
Narratives of Workers' Resistance
Author: Friedman, Eli; Li, Zhongjin; Ren, Hao
Through first person accounts, the book details the growing unrest, destabilization and strikes in factories that are gripping China.
- China Shakes the World
Author: Belden, Jack
Jack Belden's classic account of the Chinese civil war.
- China's Rise: Strength and Fragility
Author: Loong Yu, Au
Loong Yu examines in detail the road from the revolution in China, from a largely rural peasant country in 1949 to the present huge capitalist economy.
- Chinese Shadows
Author: Leys, Simon
A description of Mao Zedong's China.
- The End of the Revolution
China and the Limits of Modernity
Author: Hui, Wang
Wang Hui is a leading member of China's "New Left". He challenges both the bureaucratic one-party regime and the Western neoliberal paradigm. He calls for alternatives to both China's capitalist transformation and its repressive and authoritarian past.
Underdevelopment and Revolution
Author: Harris, Nigel
- The Mandate of Heaven
Marx and Mao in Modern China
Author: Harris, Nigel
Chinas transformation from a poor country devastated by war into a major world power is a modern legend. But how did this change come about? What are the real living conditions of the peasants and workers? Why, when apparently united in their beliefs, are Russia and China enemies? And why, if Mao is right, must Marx be wrong? Using publications from the Peoples Republic and his own extensive research, Nigel Harris has written a serious critique of the history, aims and actions of the communist Party in China.
- Oracle Bones
A Journey Between China's Past and Present
Author: Hessler, Peter
A first-hand exploration of contemporary China through the accounts of its living citizens as well as through ancient artifacts uncovered in archeological digs -- a psycho-social examination of who the Chinese are today.
- Scattered Sand
The Story of China's Rural Migrants
Author: Pai, Hsiao-Hung
Each year, 200 million workers from Chinas vast rural interior travel between cities and provinces in search of employment: the largest human migration in history. This indispensable army of labour accounts for half of Chinas GDP, but is an unorganized workforce scattered sand, in Chinese parlance and the most marginalized and impoverished group of workers in the country.
- Under the Dome
Author: Chai, Jing
A self-financed Chinese documentary film by Chai Jing, a former China Central Television journalist, concerning air pollution in China. It is narrated by Chai, who presents the results of her year-long research mostly in the form of a lecture.
Learning from our History
Resources for Activists
The Connexions Calendar - An event calendar for activists. Submit your events for free here.
Media Names & Numbers - A comprehensive directory of Canada’s print and broadcast media. .
Sources - A membership-based service that enables journalists to find spokespersons and story ideas, and which simultaneously enables organizations to raise their profile by reaching the media and the public with their message.
Organizing Resources Page - Change requires organizing. Power gives way only when it is challenged by a movement for change, and movements grow out of organizing. Organizing is qualitatively different from simple “activism”. Organizing means sustained long-term conscious effort to bring people together to work for common goals. This page features a selection of articles, books, and other resources related to organizing.
Publicity and Media Relations - A short introduction to media relations strategies.
Grassroots Media Relations - A media relations guide for activist groups.
Socialism Gateway - A gateway to resources about socialism, socialist history, and socialist ideas.
Marxism Gateway - A gateway to resources about Marxism.
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