Resources

Lists of recommended books, articles, films, and websites about China, to be updated periodically, with links to those available online.1

A few texts in Chinese and other languages are listed at the bottom; the others are limited to English. Some books appear in more than one list.

 


Friends

Nào (闹) is unrest, noise, uproar. It stands for the proletarian troublemakers, for the revolts of peasants, workers and the unemployed against expropriation, exploitation and exclusion.
Nao

Spartacus

Monthly round-ups of the class struggle in East Asia. The most important stories appear on their Twitter feed first.
Blog

Gongchao

工潮 Gōngcháo: strike wave or workers’ mobilization. Gongchao.org was formed in September 2008 as a project for the research and documentation of labor unrest and social movements in China from the perspective of class struggle, migration and gender. The website offers a selection of analytical texts and workers’ own narratives in several languages. Besides writing and translating articles and books, gongchao.org participates in inquiries and interview projects in China and sets up discussions on workers’ struggles around the world.
Website

China Study Group

China Study Group was formed in New York City in 1993 as a non-profit organization, and it is now a global group of scholars and activists concerned with carrying on the critical tradition of China-focused critique perhaps best exemplified in the past by William Hinton. The purpose of the CSG is to facilitate the networking of such people and to promote the dissemination of critical information and research works. It aims to provide alternative perspectives on and assessments of issues pertaining to China — both its revolutionary past and today’s China in the context of globalization.
Website

Online Resources

Top Books

Most-recommended books

Anagnost, Ann. National Past-Times: Narrative, Representation, and Power in Modern China. (Duke University Press, 1997)

Barlow, Tani. The Question of Women in Chinese Feminism. (Duke University Press, 2004)

PPSC Cover

Day, Alexander. The Peasant in Postsocialist China: History, Politics and Capitalism. (Cambridge University Press, 2013)

Dirlik, Arif. Anarchism in the Chinese Revolution. (University of California Press, 1991) – online here.

Friedman, Eli. The Insurgency Trap: Labor Politics in Postsocialist China. (Cornell University Press, 2014)

Gates, Hill. China’s Motor: A Thousand Years of Petty Capitalism. (Cornell University Press, 1996)

Hao Ren, et al. China On Strike: Narratives of Workers’ Resistance. (Haymarket Books, 2016)

hershatter1

Hershatter, Gail. Women in China’s Long Twentieth Century. (University of California Press, 2007)

Hinton, William. Fanshen: A Documentary of Revolution in a Chinese Village. (University of California Press, 1966)

Hsing, You-tien. The Great Urban Transformation: Politics of Land and Property in China. (Oxford University Press, 2012)

Hung, Ho-fung. China and the Transformation of Global Capitalism. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009)

Lee, Ching Kwan. Against the Law: Labor Protests in China’s Rustbelt and Sunbelt. (Berkeley, University of California Press, 2007)

Meisner, Maurice. Mao’s China and After: A History of the People’s Republic, Third Edition. (New York: The Free Press, 1999) – on Google Books.

pun1

Pun, Ngai. Made in China: Women Factory Workers in a Global Workplace. (Durham: Duke University Press, 2005)

Rofel, Lisa. Other Modernities: Gendered Yearnings in China after Socialism. (UC Press, 1999)

Sheehan, Jackie. Chinese Workers: A New History. (London: Routledge, 1998) – online here.

Zheng Tiantian. Red Lights: The Lives of Sex Workers in Postsocialist China (UMN Press, 2009)

Wu, Yiching. The Cultural Revolution at the Margins: Chinese Socialism in Crisis. (Harvard University Press, 2014) – see Christopher Connery’s review essay here.

Articles

Articles

Aufheben2

Welcome to the Chinese Century?

Class conflicts in the transformation of China  

Brendel, Cajo

Theses on the Chinese revolution  

Carter, Lance

Auto Industry Strikes in China

A Chinese Alternative? Interpreting the Chinese New Left Politically  

Connery, Christopher

The margins and the centre: for a new history of the Cultural Revolution  

Arif Dirlik

Dimensions of Chinese Anarchism: An Interview

Born in Translation: “China” in the Making of “Zhongguo”  

Empire Logistics

Port trucker strike Ningbo, China  

Friedman, Eli

The Primary Contradiction

The Urbanization of the Chinese Working Class

Outside the New China  

Gongchao

The new strikes in China

Against the fetish of representation: class struggle in China beyond the leftist Grand Narrative

‘I work beside my shit. I eat beside my shit’: impressions from the dockworkers strike in Hong Kong

‘We are no machines’: workers’ struggle in a Chinese electronics factory in Poland  

Hioe, Brian

The Pro-Independence Left vs. the Pro-Unification Left in the Sinophone World

Husunzi

A Commune in Sichuan? Reflections on Endicott’s Red Earth

The Battle for East Lake in Wuhan

Homicide as a weapon of the weak in postsocialist China

Notes on Class Struggle and Democracy in Hong Kong  

Katsiaficas, George

China’s 1989 in a World of Uprisings  

Mouvement Communiste & KPK

Workers’ autonomy strikes in China  

Prol-Position / Wildcat

China in crisis: reason to panic?

Women Workers in China, 1949-2007

China’s migrant workers

The generation of unhappy workers, 2007  

Schling, Hannah

Gender, temporality, and the reproduction of labour power: women migrant workers in South China  

Tang Shui’en

The Alternative Education of a Chinese Punk  

Ultra

Black vs. Yellow: Class Antagonism and Hong Kong’s Umbrella Movement  

Wang Shaoguang

“New trends of thought” in the Cultural Revolution

Wu, Yiching

Rethinking ‘Capitalist Restoration’ in China

Zarrow, Peter

He Zhen and anarcha-feminism in China

Films

Books

Modern Chinese History

chinaindustry1   Anagnost, Ann. National Past-Times: Narrative, Representation, and Power in Modern China. (Duke University Press, 1997)

Andreas, Joel. Rise of the Red Engineers: The Cultural Revolution and the Origins of China’s New Class. (Stanford University Press, 2009)

Barlow, Tani. The Question of Women in Chinese Feminism. (Duke University Press, 2004)

Day, Alexander. The Peasant in Postsocialist China: History, Politics and Capitalism. (Cambridge University Press, 2013)

Dirlik, Arif. The Origins of Chinese Communism, (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989)

Dirlik, Arif. Anarchism in the Chinese Revolution. (University of California Press, 1991) – online here.

Dirlik, Arif and Ming Chan. Schools into Fields and Factories: Anarchists, the Guomindang, and the National Labor University in Shanghai, 1927-1932 (Duke University Press, 1991)

Gates, Hill. China’s Motor: A Thousand Years of Petty Capitalism. (Cornell University Press, 1996)

Hart-Landsberg, Martin and Paul Burkett. China and Socialism: Market Reforms and Class Struggle. (New York: Monthly Review Press, 2010)

Hung, Ho-fung. China and the Transformation of Global Capitalism. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009)

Isaacs, Harold R. The Tragedy of the Chinese Revolution (1938) – online here.

Meisner, Maurice. Mao’s China and After: A History of the People’s Republic, Third Edition. (New York: The Free Press, 1999)

Li Minqi. The Rise of China and the Demise of the Capitalist World-Economy. (Pluto Pres, 2008)

Lin Chun. The Transformation of Chinese Socialism. (Duke University Press, 2006)

Perry, Elizabeth. Shanghai on Strike Shanghai on Strike: The Politics of Chinese Labor (Stanford University Press, 1993) – online with brief commentary here.

Perry, Elizabeth and Li Xun. Proletarian Power: Shanghai in the Cultural Revolution. (Boulder: Westview Press, 1997) Wang Chaohua, ed. One China, Many Paths. (Verso, 2003)

Wang Hui. China’s New Order. China’s New Order: Society, Politics, and Economy in Transition. (Harvard University Press, 2003)

Wang Hui. The End of Revolution: China and the Limits of Modernity (Verso, 2010)

Weil, Robert. Red Cat, White Cat: China and the Contradictions of Market Socialism (Monthly Review Press, 1996)

Wu, Yiching. The Cultural Revolution at the Margins: Chinese Socialism in Crisis. (Harvard University Press, 2014)

Zarrow, Peter. Anarchism and Chinese Political Culture (Columbia University Press, 1990)

Zhao Dingxin. The Power of Tiananmen: State-Society Relations and the 1989 Beijing Student Movement (University of Chicago Press, 2001)

 

Chinese Workers

"Manufacturing #17", Deda Chicken Processing Plant, Dehui City, Jilin Province, 2005 Chan, Anita, ed. China’s Workers under Assault: The Exploitation of Labor in a Globalizing Economy (M.E. Sharpe, 2001)

Chan, Anita, ed. Chinese Workers in Comparative Perspective. (Cornell University Press, 2015)

Chan, Chris King-chi. The Challenge of Labour in China: Strikes and the Changing Labour Regime in Global Factories. (2010)

Friedman, Eli. The Insurgency Trap: Labor Politics in Postsocialist China. (Cornell University Press, 2014)

Lee, Ching Kwan. Gender and the South China Miracle: Two Worlds of Factory Women. (Berkeley, University of California Press, 1998)

Lee, Ching Kwan. Against the Law: Labor Protests in China’s Rustbelt and Sunbelt. (Berkeley, University of California Press, 2007)

Lee, Ching Kwan, ed. Working in China: Ethnographies of Labor and Workplace Transformation. (London: Routledge, 2006)

Leung, Parry. Labor Activists and the New Working Class in China: Strike Leaders’ Struggles. (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015)

Liu Jieyu. Gender and Work in Urban China: Women workers of the unlucky generation. (Taylor & Francis, 2007)3

Lü Xiaobo and Elizabeth Perry, eds. Danwei: The Changing Chinese Workplace in Historical and Comparative Perspectives (M.E. Sharpe, 1997)

Perry, Elizabeth. Shanghai on Strike: The Politics of Chinese Labor (Stanford University Press, 1993) – online here.

Philion, Stephen E. Workers’ Democracy in China’s Transition from State Socialism. (New York: Taylor & Francis, 2008) – see our review here.

Pun, Ngai. Made in China: Women Factory Workers in a Global Workplace. (Durham: Duke University Press, 2005)

Rofel, Lisa. Other Modernities: Gendered Yearnings in China after Socialism. (UC Press, 1999)

Sheehan, Jackie. Chinese Workers: A New History. (London: Routledge, 1998) – online here.

Solinger, Dorothy. Contesting Citizenship in Urban China: Peasant Migrants, the State, and the Logic of the Market. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999)

Yan, Hairong. New Masters, New Servants: Migration, Development, and Women Workers in China. (Durham: Duke University Press, 2008)

Zheng Tiantian. Red Lights: The Lives of Sex Workers in Postsocialist China (UMN Press, 2009)

 

Women & Gender

dagongmei1 Barlow, Tani E. The Question of Woman in Chinese Feminism. (Duke University Press, 2004)

Brownwell, Su­san and Jeffrey Wasserstrom, eds. Chinese Femininities, Chinese Masculinities: A Reader (University of California Press, 2002)

Dai Jinhua. Cinema and Desire: Feminist Marxism and Cultural Politics in the Work of Dai Jinhua, eds. Jing Wang and Tani E. Barlow (Verso, 2002)

Gilmartin, Christina Kelley. Engendering the Chinese Revolution: Radical Women, Communist Politics, and Mass Movements in the 1920s. (University of California Press, 1995)

Gilmartin, Christina, Gail Hershatter, Lisa Rofel and Tyrene White. Engendering China: Women, Culture, and the State. (Harvard University Press, 1994)

Hershatter, Gail. Women in China’s Long Twentieth Century. (University of California Press, 2007)

Hershatter, Gail. The Gender of Memory: Rural Women and China’s Collective Past. (University of California Press, 2011)

Honig, Emily and Gail Hershatter. Personal Voices: Chinese Women in the 1980s. (Stanford University Press, 1988)

Liu Jieyu. Gender and Work in Urban China. Women workers of the unlucky generation. (Taylor & Francis, 2007)4

Liu, Lydia H., Rebecca E. Karl, and Dorothy Ko. The Birth of Chinese Feminism: Essential Texts in Transnational Theory. (Columbia University Press, 2013)

Pun, Ngai. Made in China: Women Factory Workers in a Global Workplace. (Durham: Duke University Press, 2005)

Rofel, Lisa. Other Modernities: Gendered Yearnings in China after Socialism. (UC Press, 1999)

Yan, Hairong. New Masters, New Servants: Migration, Development, and Women Workers in China. (Duke University Press, 2008)

Yao Ching, ed. As Normal as Possible: Negotiating Sexuality and Gender in Mainland China and Hong Kong (Hong Kong University Press, 2010)

Xinran. The Good Women of China: Hidden Voices (Anchor, 2003)

Zheng Tiantian. Red Lights: The Lives of Sex Workers in Postsocialist China (UMN Press, 2009)

 

Rural China

IMG_9335 Bramall, Chris. The Industrialization of Rural China. (Oxford University Press, 2007)

Cao, Jinqing. China along the Yellow River: Reflections on Rural Society. Translated by Nicky Harman and Huang Ruhua. (RoutledgeCurzon, 2005)

Chan, Anita, Richard Madsen and Jonathan Unger. Chen Village: Revolution to Globalization (University of California Press, 2009)

Chen Guidi and Wu Chuntao. Will the Boat Sink the Water?: The Life of China’s Peasants. (HarperCollins, 2007)

Day, Alexander F. The Peasant in Postsocialist China: History, Politics, and Capitalism. (Cambridge University Press, 2013)

Endicott, Stephen. Red Earth: Revolution in a Sichuan Village. (New Amsterdam Books, 1991)5

Eyferth, Jacob. Eating Rice from Bamboo Roots: The Social History of a Community of Handicraft Papermakers in Rural Sichuan, 1920-2000. (Harvard, 2009)

Gao, Mobo C. F. Gao Village: A Portrait of Rural Life in Modern China. (University of Hawai’i Press, 1999)

Hale, Matthew A. Reconstructing the Rural: Peasant Organizations in a Chinese Movement for Alternative Development. (University of Washington, 2013) – online here.

Han, Dongping. The Unknown Cultural Revolution: Life and Change in a Chinese Village. (Monthly Review Press, 2008)

Hershatter, Gail. The Gender of Memory: Rural Women and China’s Collective Past. (University of California Press, 2011)

Hinton, William. Fanshen: A Documentary of Revolution in a Chinese Village. (University of California Press, 1966)

Hinton, William. Shenfan: The Continuing Revolution in a Chinese Village. (Random House, 1983)

Huang, Philip C. C. The Peasant Family and Social Change in North China. (Stanford University Press, 1985)

Huang, Philip C. C. The Peasant Family and Rural Development in the Yangzi Delta, 1350-1988. (Stanford University Press, 1990)

Manning, Kimberly Ens and Felix Wemheuer, eds. Eating Bitterness: New Perspectives on China’s Great Leap Forward and Famine (UBC Press, 2012)

Tsai, Lily. Accountability Without Democracy: Solidary Groups and Public Goods Provision in Rural China(Cambridge, 2007)

Unger, Jonathan. The Transformation of Rural China. (M.E. Sharpe, 2002)

Walker, Kathy Le Mons. Chinese Modernity and the Peasant Path: Semicolonialism in the North Yangzi Delta. (Stanford University Press, 1999)

 

Oral Histories & Memoirs

dagongmei2 Chun Sue. Beijing Doll. (Riverhead, 2004)

Cunningham, Philip. Tiananmen Moon: Inside the Chinese Student Uprising of 1989 (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2010)

Gates, Hill. Looking for Chengdu: A Woman’s Adventures in China (Cornell University Press, 1999)

Hershatter, Gail and Emily Honig. Personal Voices: Chinese Women in the 1980s. (Stanford University Press, 1988)

Hessler, Peter. River Town: Two Years on the Yangtze. (Harper, 2001)

Liao Yiwu. The Corpse Walker – Real Life Stories: China From the Bottom Up. (Knopf Doubleday, 2009)

Ma Yan and Pierre Haski. The Diary of Ma Yan: The Struggles and Hopes of a Chinese School Girl (HarperCollins, 2005)

Rae Yang. Spider Eaters: A Memoir (University of California Press, 1997)

Snow, Edgar. Red Star Over China. (Grove Press, 1968)

Ye, Sang, Geremie Barme and Miriam Lang, eds. China Candid: The People on the People’s Republic. (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2001)

Xinran. The Good Women of China: Hidden Voices (Anchor, 2003)

Zhong Xueping, Zheng Wang, Bai Di, eds. Some of Us: Chinese Women Growing Up in the Mao Era.(Rutgers University Press, 2001)

 

Translated Fiction

luxun1

Ba Jin. Family.

Ding Ling. I Myself Am a Woman: Selected Writings of Ding Ling (edited by Tani E. Barlow and Gary J. Bjorge, Beacon Press, 1989)

Han Shaogang. 2005. A Dictionary of Maqiao.

Lu Xun. The Real Story of Ah-Q and Other Tales (translated by Julia Lovell, Penguin Classics, 2010)

Ma Jian. 2008. Beijing Coma.

Mo Yan. 1995. The Garlic Ballads.

Su Tong. Rice: A Novel (Harper, 1994)

Wang Shuo. Please Don’t Call Me Human.

Wang Xiaobo. Wang in Love and Bondage: Three Novellas (SUNY Press, 2008)

Yu Hua. 2007. Cries in the Drizzle.

 

Miscellaneous

Fruit+Seller Brook, Timothy. The Confusions of Pleasure: Commerce and Culture in Ming China. (University of California Press, 1999)

Chan, Anita, ed. Walmart in China (ILR Press, 2011)

Dikötter, Frank, Lars Laamann and Zhou Xun. Narcotic Culture: A History of Drugs in China (University of Chicago Press, 2005)

Dutton, Michael. Streetlife China. (Cambridge, 1999)

Gladney, Dru. Dislocating China: Muslims, Minorities, and Other Subaltern Subjects (University of Chicago Press, 2004)

Harrell, Stevan. Cultural Encounters on China’s Ethnic Frontiers. (University of Washington Press, 1994)

Hsing, You-tien. The Great Urban Transformation: Politics of Land and Property in China. (Oxford University Press, 2012)

Hsing, You-tien and Ching Kwan Lee, eds. Reclaiming Chinese Society: The New Social Activism. (Routledge, 2009)

Jones, Andrew. Like a Knife: Ideology and Genre in Contemporary Chinese Popular Music. (University of Hawai’i Press, 1995)

Lipman, Jonathn. Familiar Strangers: A History of Muslims in Northwest China (University of Washington Press, 1998)

Litzinger, Ralph. Other Chinas: The Yao and the Politics of National Belonging (Duke University Press, 2000) Mathews,

Gordon. Ghetto at the Center of the World: Chungking Mansions, Hong Kong (Hong Kong University Press, 2011)

Mertha, Andrew. China’s Water Warriors: Citizen Action and Policy Change (Cornell University Press, 2010)

Osburg, John. Anxious Wealth: Money and Morality Among China’s New Rich (Stanford University Press, 2013)

Qin Shao. Shanghai Gone: Domicide and Defiance in a Chinese Megacity (Rowman & Littlefield, 2013)

Shapiro, Judith. China’s Environmental Challenges (Polity Press, 2012)

Yeh, Emily T. Taming Tibet: Landscape Transformation and the Gift of Chinese Development (Cornell University Press, 2013)

Zhang Li. Strangers in the City: Reconfigurations of Space, Power, and Social Networks Within China’s Floating Population (Stanford University Press, 2002)

 

  1. This page is based on the Nao resources page, which some of us helped to compile before founding Chuǎng as a separate project in 2015.
  2. In the interest of space, this list is limited to articles and blog entries available for free online.
  3. See Prol-position’s discussion of this book here.
  4. See Prol-position’s discussion of this book here.
  5. See Husunzi’s discussion of this book here.