Red Capitalists in China: The Party, Private Entrepreneurs, and Prospects for Political Change

Synopsis

It has become a truism that continued economic reform in China will contribute to political change. Policy makers as well as many scholars expect that formation of a private sector will lead, directly or indirectly through the emergence of a civil society, to political change and ultimately democratization. The rapidly growing numbers of private entrepreneurs, the formation of business associations, and the cooperative relationships between entrepreneurs and local officials are seen as initial indicators of a transition from China's still nominally communist political system. This 2003 book focuses on two related issues: whether the Chinese Communist Party is willing and able to adapt to the economic environment its reforms are bringing about, and whether China's 'red capitalists', private entrepreneurs who also belong to the communist party, are likely to be agents of political change.