The effects of the de-regulation of the Chinese university system have been nothing short of spectacular. For the first time since 1949, students possessing neither gifted intellect nor political connections have been able to share in the benefits of higher education, while a flood of international educators have opened up a previously cloistered and politically sensitized academic world. This fascinating book examines China’s higher education system, and how it’s new and unique blend of foreign and Chinese perspectives impact on both the lives of students and academics and wider Chinese society. Viewed with suspicion as a new type of Chinese by the older generation and by the government, they are at the same time the very entrepreneurs driving the economic and social revolution sweeping the country. Using a range of in-depth interviews and unique research, it provides open and often frank accounts of life, work and education in China, from the Cultural Revolution to the creation of its market-focused entrepreneurial generation. Candid and illuminating, this is a book no serious reader of Asian studies, comparative education or Asian sociology will want to be without.
'This book will be of interest to scholars of China, and to educators interested in cross-cultural educational understanding. It provides an interesting model of action research across cultures, as well as many rich insights into contemporary Chinese education at a time of rapid change. It also opens a door to the understanding of a burgeoning arena in Chinese education, that of private schooling.' The China Quarterly
Contents: An introduction to the project; The context of contemporary Chinese education; Introducing the people; Impressions of the Chinese educational environment; Interpreting themes from the stories about education; The teaching and learning dynamics of Harmony college; Work, gender, and the future; Chinese students in British universities; Their own words, the unambitious woman, the bookworm, the English teacher, the mature student, the construction kid, the self-made woman; Glossary; Bibliography; Index.