26 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2009
Date Written: August 11, 2009
Drawing on data collected from district-level government, this paper studies how the Chinese state responds to labor protests in South China. It examines both the internal logic and operational patterns of the state response involving the local court and an assortment of government agencies. Internal documents and interviews reveal an emerging mode of state reaction. In the context of protest, the court and related government agencies engage the protesters on the street, which often grants a favorable resolution. This - street as courtroom is a result of the weak capacity of the legal system coupled with a government-wide campaign to build a - harmonious society. These findings compel us to reconsider the institutional boundaries of the prototypical court, the outcome of social protest, and the appropriate role of the courts in China.
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