Anybody Out There?
The Chinese Labour Movement under Xi
Labour activism has undergone significant transformation in China over the last decade. Between the mid-2000s and mid-2010s, an increase in labour protests seemed to herald a growing and more self-confident labour movement. A series of high-profile collective actions that took place in the early 2010s brought forward a time of renewed optimism, during which the public debate on Chinese labour came to be dominated by the idea of China’s workers ‘awakening’ and taking their fate into their own hands. Far from the optimism of those years, today the effects of economic slowdown and the tightening of civil society have thrown China’s workers into a state of uncertainty and disorientation, and the Chinese labour movement has once again found itself at an impasse. This issue of Made in China takes a look at the current conjuncture.
Table of Contents
FocusChanges and Continuity: Four Decades of Industrial Relations in China | Chris King-Chi Chan
China’s Labour Movement in Transition | Geoffrey Crothall
Gongyou, the New Dangerous Class in China? | Yu Chunsen
Reconfiguring Supply Chains: Transregional Infrastructure and Informal Manufacturing in Southern China | Nellie Chu
The Struggles of Temporary Agency Workers in Xi’s China | Zhang Lu
Robot Threat or Robot Dividend? A Struggle between Two Lines | Huang Yu
A ‘Pessoptimistic’ View of Chinese Labour NGOs | Ivan Franceschini and Kevin Lin