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Title: A study on the changes of life mode and livelihood strategies of laid-off workers and the unemployed of state-owned enterprises in a community of Beijing
Authors: Guo, Weihe
Keywords: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Unemployed -- China -- Beijing
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Abstract: Since the reform of state-owned enterprises and the shift of social policy of "from welfare to workfare" in 1990s, there has been a phenomenon of "double commodification of labour" in China, which means, at the first level, marketization of employment and at the second level, orientation to flexible employment in social policy. The basic research question of this study is: how the laid-off workers and the unemployed of state-owned enterprises make their living after returning to community. The study employs the theory of "de-commodification" of labour related to Polanyi's great transformation and Marxist political economy to reconstruct the framework of sustainable livelihood. It employs the concept of practice field of Bourdieu to understand the community environment of China, and choose a community in Beijing to conduct the field work. According to the extended case method, the study extends research process from community family life to social institution and policy, and analyzes the relation between macro factors of institution and micro community life. It was found that the livelihood model of laid-off workers and the unemployed of state-owned enterprises is anti-commodification. They continue to use their group identity as a kind of capital to struggle for policy resources, and distinguish their life model from other groups of immigrant workers and merchants. Through two mechanisms of community fragmentation and euphemization, the state has induced laid-off workers and the unemployed from social welfare to informal, flexible and low-salary public employment. Meanwhile, laid-off workers and the unemployed of state-owned enterprises can resist the domination of the state by using the weapon of the weak, which is the construction of local life and development of moral politics behind the curtain. In summary, identity, social relation and ideology all influence community life practice in the process of marketization of China. This is related to the particular attributes of China society transformation, which are continuations of polity, dominant power and ideology. If we intend to protect sustainability of livelihood of grass-roots people, China must protect rights of the labour and construct unified citizenship by social policy in the process of globalization and marketization.
Description: xiv, 246 leaves : ill., ; 30 cm.
PolyU Library Call No.: [THS] LG51 .H577P APSS 2009 Guo
Rights: All rights reserved.
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