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Nornalizing Private Business in China

"Normalizing Private Business in China" by Professor Thomas Gold

Time: March 30, 4:00pm - 5:15pm

Location: White Hall 101, 201 Dowman Drive, Atlanta, GA 30322

Open and free for the public

We take it for granted that China has a strong private business class whose captains are now playing on a global stage. This is extraordinarily surprising given the relentless attacks on “tails of capitalism” before China launched unprecedented reform policies in the early 1980s. This talk addresses the questions of why and how the Communist Party changed its attitude and policy toward private business in the reform era, and how the Party continued to expand the scope for it so that, along with marketization and globalization, private business has become a normal and integral part of contemporary China.

About the speaker

Thomas B. Gold is Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, where he has taught since 1981. He also served as Associate Dean of International and Area Studies and Chair of the Center for Chinese Studies at Berkeley.

Gold became interested in China as an undergraduate at Oberlin College. After graduating he taught English at Tunghai University in Taiwan. He then received
a Master’s degree in Regional Studies-East Asia and a PhD in Sociology, both from Harvard University. In February 1979, while at Harvard he was a member of
the first group of American exchange students to study in China, spending a year at Fudan University in Shanghai.

Prof Gold’s research focuses on many aspects of the societies of East Asia, primarily Taiwan and mainland China. In the largest sense, he examines the process of the emergence of the increasingly empowered and autonomous individual and a private sphere in formerly authoritarian societies.