No Left-behind Kids, No Left-behind Old People in a Remote Chinese Village

chinesesem20162016 Chinese Studies Department Seminar Series – University of Sydney

Dr Yong Zhong

4:30-6:00pm, Monday 18 April 2016
Room 536, Brennan MacCallum Building, University of Sydney

This presentation discusses findings of a case study conducted in 2015 in an out-of-the-way village in Yunnan Province. The case study was triggered by a pilot study discovering that left-behind kids and old people, two major problems plaguing the whole of rural China, are not found in the village. Designed to confirm this prior finding and also to understand the solutions adopted to address the two problems, this case study used anthropological methods and carried out an investigation, finding that the four aspects of the village development contributed to this atypical sample in rural China. They included: (a) adequate investment in and building of infrastructure, (b) development of livelihood security, (c) enriched after-work spiritual and recreation community life, and (d) stable family structure/relations and ethnic heritage. As well as once again establishing that China has underinvested heavily in rural development, the case study also generated findings promising to provide an in-depth insight into rural China especially with regard to the real causes of and possible solutions to the current major problems.

Yong Zhong is a senior lecturer at the University of New South Wales, Australia; an honorary professor at Xi’an Jitong University and Fuzhou University; chief editor of Rural Education, and a public speaker with a passion to improve education for all. His research areas include scholarship of learning and teaching at the tertiary sector; communication and cultural studies; and translation studies. His contribution to the latter has been recognized with an ALTC (Australian Learning and Teaching Council) citation in 2009 and a UNSW FASS Dean’s Award for Best Contribution to the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in 2010. He has given lectures at numerous prestigious universities in Australia and internationally, including China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, France, and Poland.

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