China's Peasant Agriculture and Rural Society: Changing paradigms of farming
China's agriculture and rural society have undergone rapid changes in recent years. Many poorer farmers and
younger people have moved to cities, and yet China has an immense challenge to feed a growing and more
affluent population. This book provides a ‘bottom-up view’ of China's agriculture, showing how the many
millions of Chinese peasants make a living.
The book provides a vivid description of the mechanisms used by rural households to defend and sustain their
livelihoods, increasing their agricultural production and improving the quality of their lives. The authors
examine the newly emerging trajectories of entrepreneurial and capitalist farming and assess whether such
alternatives will be able to meet the enormous social, economic and environmental challenges that China faces.
The book also explores the paradigm that has underpinned the organisation and development of China’s
agriculture from ancient times to the present day. This shows the importance of balancing in the Chinese model
as compared to the one sided imposition of continual modernization in the western model. It is argued that
such balancing is at the core of the current Sannong policy, referring to the three rural of food sovereignty,
wellbeing for peasant households and an attractive countryside.