Year

2012

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Abstract

For the past three decades China's economic reform has led to rapid and unprecedented economic growth and social change. These socioeconomic changes have had a significant impact on China's elderly rural citizens. There is considerable literature on China's socioeconomic transformation and its impact on the country's social fabric. However, many of these studies have focused on urban residents, industrial issues and urban communities. There is relatively less literature on rural residents and rural communities and comparatively little attention has been paid to China's elderly rural citizens. The aim of my study is to examine the impact of China's socioeconomic changes that began in the 1980s on the life of the country's elderly rural citizens. My research indicates that while in the most general sense China's economic reform has promoted the livelihood of the country's rural population, the majority of China's elderly rural citizens lack income security and in a substantial number of cases neither family support nor government assistance are providing them with sufficient resources.

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