Publication Type

Journal Article

Version

Preprint

Publication Date

7-2015

Abstract

This paper develops a classification of the emerging agrarian class positions in China today. Using an instrument based on rural households' combination of market positions in four markets – land, labour, means of production and product – I identify five agrarian classes: the capitalist employer class, the petty‐bourgeois class of commercial farmers, two labouring classes of dual‐employment households and wage workers, and subsistence peasants. This classification is then used as a heuristic device to organize the empirical analysis that examines how dynamics of agrarian change drive class differentiation in rural China. For the capitalist employer class, the analysis focuses on their diverse paths of accumulation; for the petty‐bourgeois commercial farmers, their contingent resilience and tendencies of differentiation; and for the two classes of labour, the commodification of their subsistence. The state plays important but varying roles in all these processes.

Keywords

Accumulation, Capitalism, China, Class differentiation, Commodification, State intervention

Discipline

Asian Studies | Inequality and Stratification | Rural Sociology

Research Areas

Sociology

Publication

Journal of Agrarian Change

Volume

15

Issue

3

First Page

338

Last Page

365

ISSN

1471-0358

Identifier

10.1111/joac.12120

Publisher

Wiley

Embargo Period

3-19-2018

Copyright Owner and License

Author

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Additional URL

https://doi.org/10.1111/joac.12120

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