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date: 27 June 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Everyday life under communism was predominantly rural, and most rural people living under communism were Chinese. This chapter examines rural work, including collective land arrangements, varying types of compensation, and creative survival strategies. It also focuses on the central roles of family and sex in the communist countryside. It concludes by assessing how technology, from tractors to electricity to irrigation, transformed villages. Centred on China but also covering rural life in Albania, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cuba, Hungary, Laos, North Korea, Romania, and Vietnam, the chapter shows that some villagers welcomed certain changes introduced by communist regimes, but systemic rural–urban inequality meant that rural people shouldered heavier burdens than city dwellers.

Keywords: work, collective, family, sex, technology, tractors, electricity, irrigation, inequality

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