The New Rich in China: Future rulers, present lives, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The New Rich in China

Future rulers, present lives, 1st Edition

Edited by David Goodman


306 pages | 2 B/W Illus.

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Three decades of reform since 1978 in the People’s Republic of China have resulted in the emergence of new social groups which have included new occupations and professions generated as the economy has opened up and developed and, most spectacularly given the legacy of state socialism, the identification of those who are regarded as wealthy. However, although China’s new rich are certainly a consequence of globalization, there remains a need for caution in assuming either that China’s new rich are a middle class, or that if they are they should immediately be equated with a universal middle class.

Including sections on class, status and power, agency and structure and lifestyle The New Rich in China investigates the political, socio-economic and cultural characteristics of the emergent new rich in China, the similarities and differences to similar phenomenon elsewhere and the consequences of the new rich for China itself. In doing so it links the importance of China to the world economy and helps us understand how the growth of China’s new rich may influence our understanding of social change elsewhere. This is a subject that will become increasingly important as China continues its development and private entrepreneurship continues to be encouraged and as such The New Rich in China will be an invaluable volume for students and scholars of Chinese studies, history and politics and social change.


"Students of social stratification in China will have much to learn (and debate) from this book. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above." -- J. Li, CHOICE July 2009 Vol. 46 No. 11

'The New Rich in China will be a fine reader to anchor an advanced course in Chinese politics or in a comparative course of social stratification.' - Deborah Davis, The China Quarterly, 196, December 2008

Table of Contents

Part 1: Introduction 1 The New Rich in China: The consequences of social change, David Goodman and Xiaowei Zang Part 2: Class, Status, and Power 2 Why there is no new middle class, David Goodman 3 Class and Stratum: The politics of description, Yingjie Guo 4 Social status, Xiaowei Zang Part 3:Agencies and Structures 5 CEOs and the corporate sector, Colin Hawes 6 Women Entrepreneurs and Local Politics, Minglu Chen 7 The Professional Middle Classes: Management and politics, Ivan Cucco 8 Lawyers, Doctors and Professors, Jingqing Yang 9 Small town entrepreneurs, Beatriz Carrillo 10 National minority entrepreneurs and activists, Tim Oakes and Wu Xiaoping Part 4: Life styles 11 "What’s in a high-class neighbourhood?” Housing and ethical self-government for Beijing’s new rich, Luigi Tomba 12 Cultural constructions, Stephanie Helmyrk Donald 13 New Symbolic Wealth: The Best Things Come in Small Boxes, Carolyn Cartier 14 The Maid’s story: New rich family life styles, Sun Wanning 15 Women in Public, Louise Edwards 16 For love or money? Commercial sex and the new rich in reform-era China, Elaine Jeffreys

About the Editor

David S G Goodman is Professor of Contemporary China Studies at the University of Technology, Sydney. In the 1990s he created the project to examine the New Rich in Asia, also published by Routledge.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Asia / China
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Economic Conditions
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture