China’s Workers Under Assault: The Exploitation of Labor in a Globalizing Economy

TitleChina’s Workers Under Assault: The Exploitation of Labor in a Globalizing Economy
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsChan, A.
PublisherM. E. Sharpe, Inc.
CityNew York
KeywordsChina, globalization, human rights, salary, worker abuse, workers’ rights, working conditions

This important book contains case studies with substantive analysis of Chinese workers in a variety of settings: state enterprises, urban collectives, township and village enterprises, domestic private enterprises, and foreign funded enterprises. The cases include urban workers, migrant workers from the countryside, and workers who are sent to work outside of China.

The analytical framework for these case studies lays out why labor rights violations have been occurring in China and highlights the context in which these violations operate and the extent to which these selected cases are not isolated incidents. Moreover, the dilemma of Chinese workers is put into international perspective: the context of the international labor market, the setting of competitive minimum wages in Asia, and the concern for Chinese workers' rights taken up by the International Labor Organization (ILO).

This book debunks the conventional wisdom that Chinese workers are thriving because the Chinese economy is booming. Indeed the wage structures of these enterprises of different ownership types contribute to widening income disparities in China. The book uncovers what exactly the overseas Chinese entrepreneurship (Taiwan and Hong Kong), means at the factory level. And it calls for a new approach to scrutinizing the phenomena of the so-called Chinese economic "miracle" and its repercussions on other economies and labor markets. (publisher's statement)