Book

The children of China's great migration (2020)

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Abstract

In China in 2018 over 200 million rural migrants worked away from their hometowns, fuelling the country's rapid economic boom. In the 2010s over sixty-one million rural children had at least one parent who had migrated without them, while nearly half had been left behind by both parents. Rachel Murphy draws on her longitudinal fieldwork in two landlocked provinces to explore the experiences of these left-behind children and to examine the impact of this great migration on childhood in China and on family relationships. Using children's voices, Murphy provides a multi-faceted insight into experiences of parental migration, study pressures, poverty, institutional discrimination, patrilineal family culture, and reconfigured gendered and intergenerational relationships.