Collective Petition and Local State Responses in Rural China

“Collective Petitions and Local State Responses in Rural China,” in Teresa Wright, ed., Handbook of Protest and Dissent in China, Edward Elgar Publishing (2019)

21st Century China Center Research Paper No. 2019-01

18 Pages Posted: 3 May 2019 Last revised: 18 Jul 2019

See all articles by Lei Guang

Lei Guang

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - 21st Century China Center

Yang Su

University of California, Irvine

Date Written: May 1, 2019

Abstract

China has experienced a dramatic increase in citizen protests and civil unrest in the past two decades. As aggrieved citizens grow more assertive in their demands, government officials increasingly worry about social instability. Stability maintenance has become an obsession of the Chinese state, a focal point of attention for its political-legal apparatus—namely the party committee, the police, the courts and China’s unique petition system. This chapter draws on a unique dataset of collective petitions in a provincial capital in a largely rural province to offer a description of Chinese citizens’ collective petition activities (defined by government regulations as involving five or more people) around the time of the petitions surge in the early 2000s. Specifically, the chapter analyzes how the size of petitions, the petitioners’ social status, and the adoption of disruptive tactics influenced the way that petition officials dealt with the petitioners.

Keywords: political institutions, collective petitions, petitions, law, local government, china

Suggested Citation

Guang, Lei and Su, Yang, Collective Petition and Local State Responses in Rural China (May 1, 2019). “Collective Petitions and Local State Responses in Rural China,” in Teresa Wright, ed., Handbook of Protest and Dissent in China, Edward Elgar Publishing (2019); 21st Century China Center Research Paper No. 2019-01 . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3381103 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3381103

Lei Guang (Contact Author)

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) - 21st Century China Center ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive #0519
La Jolla, CA 92093-0519
United States

Yang Su

University of California, Irvine ( email )

Campus Drive
Irvine, CA 62697-3125
United States

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