Gender, Work, and Family in a Chinese Economic Zone
Laboring in Paradise
Riley, Nancy E
2013, X, 162 p.
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Examines the gender division of labor and the intra-household power dynamics of migrants in China
Explores the complexities of women's lives in a changing economic and social environment
This book examines the dynamics of power within the families of married women who have migrated from rural areas to China's Dalian Economic Zone. Engaging the question of whether waged work gives women power in their families, this ethnographic study finds that women do indeed use their new positions and urban status to negotiate their family status. However, women use these new resources not necessarily to promote their own individual liberation, but rather to strengthen their contribution as wives and, especially, as mothers. Thus, this new modernity provides a space for the re-inscribing of traditional roles, even as it may work to give women new-found power within their families. How and why this process occurs is related to the dual inequalities these women face as rural migrants and as women.
Content Level »Research
Keywords »Chinese or foreign-owned factories - Constructions of gender - Dalian, Northeast China - Emancipation of women - Family studies - Gender inequalitites in the household - Lives of married women - Motherhood - Rural migration - Urban status - Women's power
Acknowledgement.- Chapter 1: Introduction.- Chapter 2: Doing Research in the Dalian Economic Zone.- Chapter 3: Urban as Paradise: Understanding the Urban/Rural Divide.- Chapter 4: "It 's just Women's Lot": The Roler of Gender.- Chapter 5: "A Women has to struggle to get what she wants": Gender and Power.- Chapter 6: Performing Gender in a Modern Economic Zone.- Chapter 7: Conclusion.- Bibliography.