The Political Economy of Rural Development in China, 1978-1999

By Weixing Chen | Go to book overview

2
A Party of Economics and Market-Oriented Communal Socialism

The impact of the reform on the CCP and China over the last twenty years has been profound. I propose in this chapter that the CCP is being transformed from a party of politics engaged in "class struggle" into a party of economics primarily preoccupied with economic growth and that China's Leninist state socialism is being transformed into marketoriented communal socialism (MOCS) after twenty years of economic reform.

Four major features of Leninist state socialism are a monolithic and all-pervasive party, an enforced official communist ideology in politics and practice, a planned economy, and state and collective ownership of property and resources. By 1999, four major changes had occurred: (1) The CCP was changing from a party of politics to a party of economics by rejecting "class struggle" and discarding communist ideology in China's economic development and by making the "four modernizations" the new mission of the CCP; (2) a planned economy was replaced by a semi-planned, semi-market economy; (3) the state-society relationship was being transformed; and (4) basic-level societal entities, still under the influence of the state but increasingly exposed to the market, were undergoing fundamental changes.

China is still a socialist country in the sense that "for more than forty years a ruling Communist Party has guided the transformation of China's political economy," 1 the current economic reform is still a CCP-sponsored and -supervised program, and the CCP is still at the

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The Political Economy of Rural Development in China, 1978-1999
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Copyright Acknowledgments v
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • Introduction xi
  • Abbreviations xv
  • 1 - Ideology and Economic Development 1
  • Notes 26
  • 2 - A Party of Economics and Market-Oriented Communal Socialism 29
  • Notes 45
  • 3 - The Dengist Reform in Historical Perspective 47
  • Notes 68
  • 4 - The Village Conglomerate: A New Form of Political Economy 71
  • Notes 98
  • 5 - The Peasant Challenge at the Turn of the Century 101
  • Notes 117
  • 6 - Village Elections for Self-Government 119
  • Notes 134
  • 7 - A New Ideological Discourse: Deng Xiaoping Theory 137
  • Notes 153
  • 8 - Understanding the Political Economy of Development 155
  • Notes 161
  • Bibliography 163
  • Index 169
  • About the Author *
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