- Used Books
- Staff Picks
- Gifts & Gift Cards
- Sell Books
- Stores & Events
- Let's Talk Books
Special Offers see all
More at Powell's
Recently Viewed clear list
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
This title in other editions
Private Life Under Socialism: Love, Intimacy, and Family Change in a Chinese Village, 1949-1999by Yunxiang Yan
Synopses & Reviews
For seven years in the 1970s, the author lived in a village in northeast China as an ordinary farmer. In 1989, he returned to the village as an anthropologist to begin the unparalleled span of eleven years fieldwork that has resulted in this book—a comprehensive, vivid, and nuanced account of family change and the transformation of private life in rural China from 1949 to 1999.
The authors focus on the personal and the emotional sets this book apart from most studies of the Chinese family. Yan explores private lives to examine areas of family life that have been largely overlooked, such as emotion, desire, intimacy, privacy, conjugality, and individuality.
He concludes that the past five decades have witnessed a dual transformation of private life: the rise of the private family, within which the private lives of individual women and men are thriving.
Book News Annotation:
Yan (anthropology, U. of California-Los Angeles) does not attempt to portray the rural village of Xiajia, where he did his field work, as representative of Chinese society as a whole. Rather he is primarily concerned with how the villagers lived their private lives under socialism, and how their local history was shaped by social conditions. Annotation (c)2003 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
“The best ethnography of rural China in the 1990s, this important book is about a rarely explored but central dimension of Chinese family life. Yan also places his study of private life directly in the center of classic debates about the character and importance of corporate kinship. It takes years of sharing villagers lives to see beneath the surface. Yan lived it, and he brings deep understanding to both the narrative and the analysis.”—Deborah Davis, Yale University
“This may well prove to be the finest rural ethnography of a Chinese village ever written. By focusing on the emotional domain, Yan invites his readers to engage ethnographically in a new domain of scholarly exploration and analysis. In so doing, he has made the Chinese more human. It is a wonderful study.”—William Jankowiak, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Includes bibliographical references (p. 267-281) and index.
About the Author
Yunxiang Yan is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is the author of The Flow of Gifts: Reciprocity and Social Networks in a Chinese Village (Stanford, 1996).
What Our Readers Are Saying
Other books you might like
History and Social Science » Anthropology » General