What would happen to China if 80% of her population is disappointed?
Peasants make 80% of the Chinese population. They were the reason the Chinese Communist Party defeated Chiang-kai-shek during China’s civil wars. Without them, China's economy couldn't have grown so fast.
But they feel trapped.
Puzhu, a typical village in south China, exemplifies how Chinese peasants feel trapped as the country dashes toward modernization.
Since 1978, changes brought about by China’s economic reforms have tiptoed into this isolated village. Like most villages in China, the most vigorous part of the population has trickled its way to the city to seek better lives, abandoning their centuries-old homes and leaving the old, the very young, and the weak behind. Meanwhile, they don’t feel home in the city. Hard working as they are, they are not granted the social welfare the city residents enjoy.
Puzhu shows how China’s political and economic reforms have impacted Chinese peasants’ lives in the context of globalization.
This is an on-going multimedia project that includes a book, a video, a flash demonstration about the village historical and cultural background, and a collection of family portraits to show the village has shrunk over the past two decades. To view the other parts of the project, please visit www.chenxphoto.com/puzhu.