Negotiating educational desire: Opportunities and aspirations of internal migrant youths in Shanghai

Ole Johannes Kaland // Anthropology // 23rd January 2013 // 1-2pm // Arts C133

china_migrants

Kicking off the series will be Ole Johannes Kaland with a lecture on ‘Negotiating educational desire: Opportunities and aspirations of internal migrant youths in Shanghai.’ All are welcome!

Abstract: In the reform era, the Chinese economy has to a large extent relied on the employment of rural labor, leading to an unprecedented scale of internal migration as over 150 million rural Chinese have searched for better lives in other provinces. Meanwhile, the distribution of social welfare is still spatially bound and hereditary as it is based on a household registration system (hukou). While educated and cultured individuals are governmentally portrayed as crucial to the continued progress of the nation, migrant children therefore have limited access to the public education system. The emphasis in this lecture is neither with the intricacies of the educational or welfare distribution systems, but about the experiences of a group of migrant youths in Shanghai as they adapt to and negotiate the particularities of their educational situations. Focusing on the educational choices of three youths in particular, it outlines the reasoning behind their respective choices and follows them in their lives in Shanghai and provinces of origin.

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