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Title: The relationship between land-lost farmers and regional government in China : integration, conflict, and their interplay
Author: Lian, Hongping
ISNI:       0000 0004 2717 1766
Awarding Body: University of Aberdeen
Current Institution: University of Aberdeen
Date of Award: 2011
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Over the last few decades, millions of Chinese farmers have been displaced from the land by government attempts to urbanise the countryside. While this urbanisation process has benefited China overall, largely because it is integral to the industrialisation process which is rapidly raising living standards in China, it has nonetheless put great strain on the farmers who have been displaced from rural collective land and livelihoods. This thesis uses sociological ethnographic research methods, specifically the extended case method, to analyse the relationship between 'land-lost' farmers and regional government officials responsible for the expropriation of their land, and to understand how each side tries to negotiate and manage that relationship. One central city, its organisations at municipal, district and street agency levels and displaced farmers of three separate resettlement communities participated in the study. Using the analytic framework of structuration theory, set alongside prevailing accounts based on conflict theory, the main conclusion is that both groups of land-lost farmers and regional officials are engaged in a complex and dynamic relationship and interplay. The relationship between land-lost farmers and regional government officials takes place within a network of power-interests structure, from where the relationship not only manifests the forces of both integration and conflict, it also presents as an ongoing process, a game played by knowledgeable agents, whose strategies are enacted, and in so doing, both reproduce that game and alter it. Farmers are not powerless and relations between farmers and officials have developed in three different ways in the three different communities, engendering more integration or more conflict.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available