East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society

March 6 | Yao Lu, “Migration and Political Development in China”




“Migration and Political Development in China”



Yao Lu

Columbia University, Sociology Department


March 6, Wed 12:00-1:30 pm

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

Pizza will be provided




Massive rural-urban migration and growing collective resistance are two profound transformations in China. This study examines how migration shapes collective resistance in sending areas. Drawing on several data sources, I find that migration acts as a vehicle of political diffusion and spurs collective resistance in rural China. But the role of migration differs by the form and scale of collective action and is conditioned by local social institutions. The role of migration is discussed in the context of distinct institutional arrangements in China, which were originally engineered to disenfranchise rural-origin people but which instead have inadvertently politicized migrants and peasants alike.


About the Presenter

Yao Lu is Associate Professor of Sociology at Columbia University. Her research focuses on how migration intersects with social and political processes in China. Her current work examines how migration affects political development in rural and urban China, how feminization of migration reconfigures gender practices in rural areas, and how migration shapes family dynamics and the well-being of migrant children and left-behind children.


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The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences.

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