Through interviews with city residents, Martin King Whyte and William L. Parish provide a unique survey of urban life in the last decade of Mao Zedong's rule. They conclude that changes in society produced under communism were truly revolutionary and that, in the decade under scrutiny, the Chinese avoided ostensibly universal evils of urbanism with considerable success. At the same time, however, they find that this successful effort spawned new and equally serious urban problems--bureaucratic rigidity, low production, and more.
Martin King Whyte is professor of sociology and an associate of the Center for Chinese Studies at the University of Michigan. William L. Parish is professor of sociology at the University of Chicago. They are the coauthors of Village and Family in Contemporary China, also published by the University of Chicago Press.