The End of the Urban-Rural Divide?

Ting Xu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

168 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The urban-rural divide in China was an entrenched feature of Chinese society in the Maoist era. This divide generated and continues to generate inequality as between the rural population and the urban population. In post-Deng China, legal and administrative distinctions between urban and rural have become blurred, especially with the development of rural-urban migration. Nevertheless, the urban-rural divide still exists, and the income of farmers is below that of urban residents. In this paper, it is argued that the emergence of the phenomenon of “quasi-commons” in rural China, crossing the “borders” of the urbanrural divide, may increase farmers’ income in the future and bridge this divide. The paper focuses on different forms of “quasi-commons” (the sharing and use of communal land) emerging in rural areas, including the farmland shareholding cooperatives and transforming rural land management rights into shares in joint ventures. There are divergent views held by Chinese academics and policy makers about “quasi-commons” in rural China, as well as the direction of change in the rural land system. However, most of the proposals for reform have been polarized between nationalization and privatization of rural land. Looking beyond this “boundary thinking” and drawing on the discourses of “the commons” (for example, the writings of Hardin, Heller and Ostrom), this paper analyses the theoretical models of both the nationalization and privatization schemes and their shortcomings. The present essay also analyses the prospect for, and the barriers to the emerging commons in rural China.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)557-573
Number of pages17
JournalArchiv fuer Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie
Volume96
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 01 Oct 2010

Fingerprint

China
nationalization
privatization
farmer
income
rural-urban migration
joint venture
urban population
rural population
rural area
resident
reform
discourse
management

Keywords

  • quasi-commons
  • rural-urban divide
  • property

Cite this

Xu, Ting. / The End of the Urban-Rural Divide?. In: Archiv fuer Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie. 2010 ; Vol. 96, No. 4. pp. 557-573.
@article{d27798af1a2d4cce99a6047640328937,
title = "The End of the Urban-Rural Divide?",
abstract = "The urban-rural divide in China was an entrenched feature of Chinese society in the Maoist era. This divide generated and continues to generate inequality as between the rural population and the urban population. In post-Deng China, legal and administrative distinctions between urban and rural have become blurred, especially with the development of rural-urban migration. Nevertheless, the urban-rural divide still exists, and the income of farmers is below that of urban residents. In this paper, it is argued that the emergence of the phenomenon of “quasi-commons” in rural China, crossing the “borders” of the urbanrural divide, may increase farmers’ income in the future and bridge this divide. The paper focuses on different forms of “quasi-commons” (the sharing and use of communal land) emerging in rural areas, including the farmland shareholding cooperatives and transforming rural land management rights into shares in joint ventures. There are divergent views held by Chinese academics and policy makers about “quasi-commons” in rural China, as well as the direction of change in the rural land system. However, most of the proposals for reform have been polarized between nationalization and privatization of rural land. Looking beyond this “boundary thinking” and drawing on the discourses of “the commons” (for example, the writings of Hardin, Heller and Ostrom), this paper analyses the theoretical models of both the nationalization and privatization schemes and their shortcomings. The present essay also analyses the prospect for, and the barriers to the emerging commons in rural China.",
keywords = "quasi-commons, rural-urban divide, property",
author = "Ting Xu",
year = "2010",
month = "10",
day = "1",
language = "English",
volume = "96",
pages = "557--573",
journal = "Archiv fuer Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie",
issn = "0001-2343",
publisher = "Franz Steiner Verlag Wiesbaden GmbH",
number = "4",

}

The End of the Urban-Rural Divide? / Xu, Ting.

In: Archiv fuer Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie, Vol. 96, No. 4, 01.10.2010, p. 557-573.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - The End of the Urban-Rural Divide?

AU - Xu, Ting

PY - 2010/10/1

Y1 - 2010/10/1

N2 - The urban-rural divide in China was an entrenched feature of Chinese society in the Maoist era. This divide generated and continues to generate inequality as between the rural population and the urban population. In post-Deng China, legal and administrative distinctions between urban and rural have become blurred, especially with the development of rural-urban migration. Nevertheless, the urban-rural divide still exists, and the income of farmers is below that of urban residents. In this paper, it is argued that the emergence of the phenomenon of “quasi-commons” in rural China, crossing the “borders” of the urbanrural divide, may increase farmers’ income in the future and bridge this divide. The paper focuses on different forms of “quasi-commons” (the sharing and use of communal land) emerging in rural areas, including the farmland shareholding cooperatives and transforming rural land management rights into shares in joint ventures. There are divergent views held by Chinese academics and policy makers about “quasi-commons” in rural China, as well as the direction of change in the rural land system. However, most of the proposals for reform have been polarized between nationalization and privatization of rural land. Looking beyond this “boundary thinking” and drawing on the discourses of “the commons” (for example, the writings of Hardin, Heller and Ostrom), this paper analyses the theoretical models of both the nationalization and privatization schemes and their shortcomings. The present essay also analyses the prospect for, and the barriers to the emerging commons in rural China.

AB - The urban-rural divide in China was an entrenched feature of Chinese society in the Maoist era. This divide generated and continues to generate inequality as between the rural population and the urban population. In post-Deng China, legal and administrative distinctions between urban and rural have become blurred, especially with the development of rural-urban migration. Nevertheless, the urban-rural divide still exists, and the income of farmers is below that of urban residents. In this paper, it is argued that the emergence of the phenomenon of “quasi-commons” in rural China, crossing the “borders” of the urbanrural divide, may increase farmers’ income in the future and bridge this divide. The paper focuses on different forms of “quasi-commons” (the sharing and use of communal land) emerging in rural areas, including the farmland shareholding cooperatives and transforming rural land management rights into shares in joint ventures. There are divergent views held by Chinese academics and policy makers about “quasi-commons” in rural China, as well as the direction of change in the rural land system. However, most of the proposals for reform have been polarized between nationalization and privatization of rural land. Looking beyond this “boundary thinking” and drawing on the discourses of “the commons” (for example, the writings of Hardin, Heller and Ostrom), this paper analyses the theoretical models of both the nationalization and privatization schemes and their shortcomings. The present essay also analyses the prospect for, and the barriers to the emerging commons in rural China.

KW - quasi-commons

KW - rural-urban divide

KW - property

M3 - Article

VL - 96

SP - 557

EP - 573

JO - Archiv fuer Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie

JF - Archiv fuer Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie

SN - 0001-2343

IS - 4

ER -