China als neuer Mittelpunkt der globalen Arbeiterunruhe


  • Beverly J. Silver
  • Lu Zhang
  • Christian Frings



China, Globalisierung, Protest, Kapital, Arbeiterklasse


Contrary to the common thesis in the literature on globalization, that the rapid growth of manufacturing in China has launched a race to the bottom concerning wages and working conditions, the rise of class struggles in China provides evidence in support of the thesis: where capital goes, labor-capital conflict shortly follows. The world historical impact of the rise of class struggle in China is evaluated by looking on different and overlapping responses by capital: geographical relocation (spatial fix), modernizing of technology and work organization, and the trajectory of the product cycle. These analytical tools are used to interpret the findings of recent fieldwork by Zhang in automobile manufacturers in China, which hint to the fact, that a stable social compact is unlikely to be reached in the „standardization phase“ of the product cycle. The implications of the further rise of labor unrest in China for the global labor movements are not yet clear. What is missing is a vision of new forms of labor organization in face of the threat of a catastrophic collapse of global capitalism.


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Silver, B. J., Zhang, L., & Frings, C. (2010). China als neuer Mittelpunkt der globalen Arbeiterunruhe. PROKLA. Zeitschrift für Kritische Sozialwissenschaft, 40(161), 605–618.



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