The study of contemporary China constitutes a fascinating yet challenging area of scholarly inquiry. Recent decades have brought dramatic changes to China's economy, society and governance. Analyzing such changes in the context of multiple disciplinary perspectives offers opportunites as well as challenges for scholars in the field known as contemporary China Studies. The SAGE Handbook of Contemporary China is a two-volume exploration of the transformations of contemporary China, firmly grounded in the both disciplinary and China-specific contexts. Drawing on a range of scholarly approaches found in the social sciences and history, an international team of contributors engage with the question of what a rapidly changing China means for the broader field of contemporary China studies, and identify areas of promising future research. Part 1: Context: History, Economy, and the Environment Part 2: Economic Transformations Part 3: Politics and Government Part 4: China on the Global Stage Part 5: China's Foreign Policy Part 6: National and Nested Identities Part 7: Urbanization and Spatial Development Part 8: Poverty and Inequality Part 9: Social Change Part 10: Future Directions for Contemporary China Studies

China's Education System: Loved and Hated

China's Education System: Loved and Hated

China's Education System: Loved and Hated
Mette Halskov Hansen


At the end of China's last dynasty, Qing (1644–1911), every second or third boy, and only a tiny minority of girls, was receiving basic training in reading and writing classical texts in one of the many Confucian private schools (Rawski 1979, 23; Thøgersen 2002, 22). A hundred years and many educational reforms later China stands out as the country hosting the world's largest state education system. By 2010, government policies and state investments had resulted in an educational system that guaranteed nine years of free universal education. On top of this, many parents were willing and able to invest in further education for their sons ...

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