The Hukou System Chinese Modernization Pattern: Tradition & modernity

In Estudios, Sociedad by PSTBS12378sxedeOPCH

The Chinese modernization is common characterized as transitional. The essence of it is that while Chinese cultures are changing and adapting to new modern times, the relative link and relation between cultures has not changed much in the past decades. Traditional or previous habits have not fully replaced by new one, on the contrary, sometimes a new concepts have become complementary of the older. As result, traditional values and modern social forces are shaping contemporary Chinese society.

Chinese modernization is embedded in a complex interplay between social, economic and political elements. A paradoxical process that is driving by a number of factors, including industrialization without urbanization, government institutions with entrepreneurial–corporate bias, an incipient society, a market & planned economy and modern society with agrarian features. Within this interesting puzzle of phenomenon that Chinese modernization presented, the Hukou plays a relevant role as the reflexion of the interplay of traditional values in the existing modernization process.

The aim in this paper is to show that the socio phenomena of both social continuity and social change in contemporary Chinese can be found in a number of different ways and Hukou is one of the most representative case of this modernization pattern. In particular three important concepts -the history, relation-based society concept and state-civilization notion- should be included in the analysis of the Hukou system to better understanding its prevalence and important role in today’s China.