2000 Volume 73 Issue 1 Pages 46-61
This paper aims to illustrate the changes in a rural area called Rutang Village in the inner urban fringe of Beijing City. The landscape surrounding Rutang Village and its land use pattern appear very rural. However, in spite of this appearance most of the labor force in Rutang Village is engaged in industrial activities. In short, agriculture-oriented society is shifting to industry-oriented in the area. In other words, Rutang Village is going through a transitional period from a purely rural village to an industrial workers' village. The emergence of the transition is due to the development of township and village enterprises, and the advantage of the closeness to Beijing City. Its functions related to agricultural production are strengthened by the administrative orders imposed by the Government of Beijing City, for Rutang Village provides mainly grain production. A collective farm management system is adopted in order to fulfill production quotas. At the same time, outside labor force are hired to maintain agricultural production level. Rutang Village has formed an original agricultural production model. In the survey of Rutang Village, it became apparent that changes of land use, social and organizational structure and economic activity are due to changes of state policies which contribute to a liberal circumstance for peasants in the inner fringe of Beijing City after the reform and opening. Meanwhile, it has also become apparent that there are influences from external factors such as industrialization and urbanization interacting with internal factors such as agro-technical advance and changes in peasants' life styles.