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A Middle-Class MisidentificationSelf-Identification in the Autobiographical Poetry of Chinese Female Peasant Workers

A Middle-Class MisidentificationSelf-Identification in the Autobiographical Poetry of Chinese... Through the autobiographical poetry of contemporary Chinese female peasant workers, this article studies how Chinese migrant workers are dis-identified by the identifying hukou system and thus become bodies of non-identity drifting in cities. Driven by the urban desire intrigued by national discourses on modernization, peasants deidentify themselves by abandoning their officially recognized rural identity only to see that they are disidentified by the authority that rejects their urban citizenship. The double dispossession leaves them no way to identify themselves. To deradicalize the nonidentity, postsocialist ideologies invent a middle-class dream, attempting to reshape migrant workers into a “working class” misidentified with a class image beyond its financial reach as well as social function. It thus disunites the working class by throwing migrant workers into constant search for identities. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png positions: asia critique Duke University Press

A Middle-Class MisidentificationSelf-Identification in the Autobiographical Poetry of Chinese Female Peasant Workers

positions: asia critique , Volume 27 (4) – Nov 1, 2019

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Copyright
Copyright 2019 by Duke University Press
eISSN
1527-8271
DOI
10.1215/10679847-7726981
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Through the autobiographical poetry of contemporary Chinese female peasant workers, this article studies how Chinese migrant workers are dis-identified by the identifying hukou system and thus become bodies of non-identity drifting in cities. Driven by the urban desire intrigued by national discourses on modernization, peasants deidentify themselves by abandoning their officially recognized rural identity only to see that they are disidentified by the authority that rejects their urban citizenship. The double dispossession leaves them no way to identify themselves. To deradicalize the nonidentity, postsocialist ideologies invent a middle-class dream, attempting to reshape migrant workers into a “working class” misidentified with a class image beyond its financial reach as well as social function. It thus disunites the working class by throwing migrant workers into constant search for identities.

Journal

positions: asia critiqueDuke University Press

Published: Nov 1, 2019

References