Seeing like the States: Chinese Rural Reform from Above and Below


Henry Luce Foundation/ACLS Program in China Studies Predissertation-Summer Travel Grants




China's recent rural land policies are guided by contradictory goals. While pushing forward agricultural land transfer in the 2016 Land-Right-Division policy, the state also emphasizes protecting small-peasants in its 2017 modernization plan. On the ground, the degree of land transfer varies greatly across regions. Based on fieldwork, interview, and archival study, this project explores state actors on different levels from a comparative and historical angle. It focuses on four related issues: What concerns and ideas shape central policy-shifts since 1978? What interests affect local officials' reactions and policy implementations? How do we explain spatial variations in land transfer? How will various paths of land transfer interact and shape China's agricultural modernization?