IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/mes/chinec/v31y1998i2p3-5.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Guest Editor's Introduction

Author

Listed:
  • Lawrence R. Sullivan

Abstract

"The driving force in society" is how Rachel Yang characterizes the role of the private economy in China. A country that for decades was proclaimed by its domestic and foreign promoters as a Socialist "utopia" and Communist "heaven" with an economy that magically avoided inflation and created full employment with equality for all is now being transformed, not by the "almighty state" with its awesome bureaucratic power and tenacious network of industrial combines but by individual and family entrepreneursâthe "little guy" who for years was all but ignored in the march to national greatness and historical pomposity. China will never be the same, but Yang realizes in this, the second installment of >i>Chinese Renaissance: The Reemergence of a Private Economy in China>/i>, that, although "challenged," the "old system" of a centrally planned economy in which anything and everything "public" was considered superior to the "private" sector is far from dead. China is still led by a cabal of Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leaders who, despite their agonizing recognition that reform in the direction of the market is necessary, cannot quite let go of their own admiration for the socialist system and its massive bureaucracies and cadres corps that provide such comfort and power. The market with its millions of private actors operating according to supply and demand must be accorded its place in "modern China," but the folks at the top still do not like it. The market reeks of everything that the old bureaucratic system was not: It is impersonal, efficient, and, worse yet, not amenable to the control of a single leader with his great "thoughts" and "visions." And so irrespective of all the favorable decisions toward reform rendered by recent CCP conferences and deliberations, the battle, the author contends, is far from over. Even as it concedes more space to market forces, the government has a vast array of powerful assets to block and make life difficult for private entrepreneurs and workersâto wit, the system of household registration >i>[hukou]>/i>, the labor allocation system, and the long-term effects of the rural-urban split that still impedes labor and capital mobility.

Suggested Citation

  • Lawrence R. Sullivan, 1998. "Guest Editor's Introduction," Chinese Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 31(2), pages 3-5, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:mes:chinec:v:31:y:1998:i:2:p:3-5
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://mesharpe.metapress.com/link.asp?target=contribution&id=K05L42K675T117TM
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mes:chinec:v:31:y:1998:i:2:p:3-5. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chris Longhurst). General contact details of provider: http://www.tandfonline.com/MCES20 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.