China's Contentious Pensioners

China Quarterly, No. 170, pp. 345-60, June 2002

16 Pages Posted: 4 Mar 2008

See all articles by William Hurst

William Hurst

Northwestern University - Department of Political Science

Kevin J. O'Brien

University of California, Berkeley - Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science

Abstract

China has seen a surge of working class protests in recent years. Many of these protests have involved retirees. Pensioners are found to be particularly prone to take to the streets because their grievances are intense and are widely-perceived to be legitimate, they are "biographically available," and they often feel nostalgic for aspects of the Maoist past. Their actions also display elements of moral economic resistance. This article draws on the available literature as well as interviews with 30 workers, retirees, laid-off workers, managers, and local officials in five cities.

Keywords: China, protest, contention, pensions, biographical availability

Suggested Citation

Hurst, William and O'Brien, Kevin J., China's Contentious Pensioners. China Quarterly, No. 170, pp. 345-60, June 2002, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1099442

William Hurst

Northwestern University - Department of Political Science ( email )

601 University Place (Scott Hall)
Evanston, IL 60201
United States

Kevin J. O'Brien (Contact Author)

University of California, Berkeley - Charles and Louise Travers Department of Political Science ( email )

210 Barrows Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States

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