New social conflicts in the Guangdong province: historical and sociological perspectives


International audienceOver the past year, we saw a proliferation of disputes. Newspapers have even reported several conflicts in the Taiwanese and Japanese companies, which have resulted in very substantial increases in wages. The movement is so strong that more and more observers are discussing the possibility of a general strike in southern China. Without being able to predict something unpredictable, we believe that conditions are gathered for a workers' spring in South China, with an explosive or creeping movement, which has already begun. We do think that it is just a beginning. The Sino-French Centre of research on organizations, and Sociological Department of Sun Yatsen University in Canton, conducted observations on field and discussions with companies, unions, activists and authorities that we would like to report in this paper and which offer us a better picture of what is going to happen. The chapter begins with by a discussion on the motivations of strikes. Then it will focus on the different actors interacting in social conflicts, trying to describe shortly their aims and strategies. All together everything seems set to prepare more strikes to come The era of low wages and obedient Chinese workers is about to end If Guangdong, China biggest southern province-became the workshop of the world, this is due to several reasons but the main one is the existence of a labour force, obedient, and accepting without protest low wages and poor working conditions. Over the past twenty years, growth has bee

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oaioai:HAL:hal-01266592v1Last time updated on 11/12/2016

This paper was published in HAL-Lyon 3.

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