The Children of China’s Great Migration and Urbanisation - Rachel Murphy

In an era of unprecedented globalisation and urbanisation, migration and education have become principal strategies through which rural Chinese families pursue socio-economic mobility. Millions of rural adults now work in China’s cities, and increasingly too in developing countries, while their children stay with grandparents and other relatives and at boarding schools. Whereas in the 1990s parents sought to earn money to secure their families’ futures in the village, in the past decade, increasingly, their main objective has been to secure their children’s off-farm futures. They do this by investing in their children’s education but also, especially when they have sons, by purchasing property in nearby industrialising towns.  By analysing children’s testimonies, family members’ accounts, observations of daily life and documentary and statistical evidence that map background patterns, Rachel Murphy will write a monograph that casts light on children’s experiences of radically changing childhoods.

Funding: British Academy Mid-Career Grant

Rachel welcomes inquiries from potential doctoral candidates and post-doctoral researchers interested in collaborating on topics about Chinese families under conditions of urbanisation and their experiences of migration.