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China's Transition and Feminist Economics


Author Info

  • Gunseli Berik
  • Xiao-yuan Dong
  • Gale Summerfield


Since 1978 China has been undergoing transition from a socialist to a capitalist economy and the opening up to international trade and investment. This process has been accelerated by WTO membership. This article presents an overview of the gendered processes and outcomes associated with China's reforms, mainly focusing on the post-1992 period when the pace of reforms accelerated. The imperative for accumulation and efficiency has resulted not only in impressive growth but also in the weakening of land rights for women, disproportionate layoffs for women workers in state enterprises, rising gender disparities in urban and rural wage employment, growing income insecurity, declining access to healthcare, and the adoption of Western/global commodified beauty standards. While jobs are expanding in new sectors and foreign-invested enterprises, these jobs are often associated with poor working conditions. This volume argues for reprioritizing equity and welfare on the policy agenda.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Feminist Economics.

Volume (Year): 13 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3-4 ()
Pages: 1-33

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Handle: RePEc:taf:femeco:v:13:y:2007:i:3-4:p:1-33

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Keywords: Gender inequality; feminist economics; economic transition; China; JEL Codes: B54; B5; B;

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Cited by:
  1. Rickne, Johanna, 2010. "Gender, Wages and Social Security in China’s Industrial Sector," Working Paper Series, Center for Labor Studies, Uppsala University, Department of Economics 2010:6, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.


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