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Marriage and Inequality in Chinese Society$
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Rubie Watson and Patricia Buckley Ebrey

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780520069305

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520069305.001.0001

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Marriage and Mobility under Rural Collectivism

Marriage and Mobility under Rural Collectivism

(p.286) Nine Marriage and Mobility under Rural Collectivism
Marriage and Inequality in Chinese Society

William Lavely

University of California Press

The structure of economic inequality was radically altered in China by the Communist party when it took power in 1949. In a series of land reallocation measures—beginning with land reform in the early 1950s and leading to full collectivization and the establishment of communes in 1958—the party created a rural environment in which people were no longer divided into classes of tenants, wage laborers, smallholders, and landlords. Although some of the most radical features of the commune system were later revised, it was not until the 1980s and the introduction of the new “responsibility system” that the machinery of collectivization was dismantled. This chapter investigates how rural collectivism affected marriage.

Keywords:   China, Communist party, marriage, rural collectivism

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