The Invisible Driver: A Case on Urban-Clan in the Contemporary Urbanizing China

Jian Xie, Beibei Guan


Contrary to the popular myth that clans, as traditional Chinese rural organizations, have been almost extinct in the process of urbanization, the clans in Shenzhen actually flourish. Thanks to the reform and opening-up policy, this international metropolis boasts clans which have successfully obtained unique existence and revitalization. As one of typical urban-clans in Shenzhen, Wen clan in Gangxia village experienced the reconstruction of the clan’s land under the external political pressure. In the cruel process of reconstruction, the authority of clan was challenged strongly. In today’s society, socialist market economy is developing day by day. Wen clan of Gangxia village revived due to the reconstruction of old city. However, the main economy control function of the clan has been replaced by a limited company; cultural function of the clan, the clan association. We can think the clan has declined after suffering from the dreariness and reconstruction in in the urbanization process from this perspective. But we can also think the clan doesn’t disappear in the Chinese cities, it just continues to interact with the city in another form from another perspective.

Keywords: China, Urbanization, clan

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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