|Reference : “The cultural politics of migrant labour rights in South China: from narrating the “d...|
|Scientific conferences in universities or research centers : Scientific conference in universities or research centers|
|Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Sociology & social sciences|
|“The cultural politics of migrant labour rights in South China: from narrating the “dagong” to online boundary-spanning”|
|Florence, Eric [Université de Liège - ULg > > Institut Confucius >]|
|European Association of Chinese Studies Conference|
|5 au 8 septembre 2012|
|European Association of Chinese Studies|
|[en] pouvoir; hégémonie; Roseberry ; mobilisations collectives; agency; empowerment; consent|
|[en] For the last two decades, in a context of combined flexible capitalism and “decentralized legal authoritarianism” (Lee Ching-Kwan, Against the Law), factories of the Pearl River Delta have been witnessing a growing spate of collective actions by rural migrant workers.
In this paper the narrative categories and “frames of contention” mobilized by migrant workers in claim-making will be investigated. The focus is put chiefly on two differently mediated genres of narratives, i.e. migrant workers’ narratives in magazines on the one hand, and more recent online written practices centred on the politics of rights and identity on the other hand. Such cultural politics of migrant labour has been insufficiently taken into account when considering the greater right awareness and surge in collective mobilization in China for the last decade. The paper develops the argument that workers’ written practices within magazines help constituting a space for struggle and negotiation around major values, state polities and legislation linked to workers’ rights. Secondly, drawing on the notion of “disorderly media” (Latham), it is argued that some of the online written practices by migrant workers may provide platforms for more radical articulations of the politics of rights and collective mobilization. What are the points of discursive rupture and contention around which processes of reversal, reapropriation, affirmation or euphemization occur? What kinds of material, socioeconomic and political relations do these identification and legitimization processes reveal? These are the questions that will be investigated.
A vast body of data are used for this paper, including songs and poems by rural workers, participant observation, in-depth interviews, published and unpublished letters to the editor of several migrants’ magazines, etc.
|Researchers ; Students|
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