Unlike many studies of social attitudes, which are based on large scale quantitative surveys, or which focus on the attitude of elites, this book considers the views of ordinary people, and is based on in-depth, qualitative interviews. This approach results in rich, nuanced data, and is especially helpful for highlighting ambivalent attitudes, where respondents may hold positive and negative views on a particular topic, views which are liable to change. The book examines attitudes on a range of subjects of current importance, including views on nationalism and internationalism, housing preferences, and educational ambitions. Throughout, the book explores how far attitudes are influenced by traditional Chinese values or by the neo-liberal outlook fostered by recent reforms, and concludes that materialism and individualism have increased.
"In this readable overview of the single child generation’s attitudes toward social change in present-day Beijing, the authors individually focus on separate topics that range from higher education, housing, and attitudes toward nationalism to the rural-urban divide over the use of digital technologies. The Chinese authors use in-depth case studies that highlight the most recent cultural trends in Beijing society. The book is at its best when the authors discuss rural and urban cultural differences as well as seek to understand some of the current social changes as being more in line with historical trends. Especially notable chapters discuss ambivalence as it pertains to youth attitudes toward online friendships and attitudes renters have toward renting and the fickleness of landlords.
Summing Up: Recommended. All academic levels/libraries."
W. R. Jankowiak, University of Nevada, Las Vegas - CHOICE
1. Introduction 2. Exploring Chinese young people's attitudes towards online communication and relationship formation: liberation, autonomy, and ambivalence 3. Probing into attitudes and perceptions towards nation and nationalism in contemporary China: uncertainty, skepticism and disdain 4. Attitudes to housing tenures among young people in transitional China 5.Beliefs and behaviours: accessing higher education in contemporary China6. Conclusions