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    “Folk Society” and Beyond: A Comparative Study of Fei Xiaotong and Robert Redfield’s Works on Civilization Studies#br#
    ZHANG Jianghua
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (4): 134-.  
    Abstract1906)   HTML    PDF(pc) (770KB)(9093)       Save
    In between the late 1920s and the early 1950s, anthropology in the West expanded its research from the traditional focus on primitive tribes to civilized societies. Fei Xiaotong and Robert Redfield were two important anthropologists who spearheaded this transition. This paper offers a historical account of their contribution as well as an academic comparative review of their works. The convergence and divergence of Fei and Redfield’s academic life can be summarized in four points: (1) their unique academic background coincidentally led to both men’s engagement in studies of “folk society” during the 1930s, when anthropology and sociology were experiencing a trend of blending with each other; (2) after the 1940s, Fei and Redfield became acquainted and remained very close colleagues throughout their life time. Their friendship and collaboration were extremely beneficial to the academic career of both men; (3) in terms of methodology, Fei was more keen in pattern analysis and comparative studies, by which he believed an understanding of the whole society could be reached. Redfield was more interested in concepts and conceptual frameworks. His FolkUrban Continuum, used to explain the problems of community diversity and cultural changes, was a typical example; (4) even though they favored different methodology, Fei and Redfield both suggested a unified society on a rural and urban integrated structure. Fei and Redfield represented a parallel development of studies of civilizations in China and in the West, each with their own uniqueness and differences. Fei, like other Chinese social scientists of the time, lived through a painful period of national crisis and humiliation during his intellectual awakening. This historical burden colored the way he perceived the world and put certain strains on his knowledge.
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    Sons or Daughters? Who Are Caring for Aging Parents: A Gender Comparative Study of Chinese Family#br#
    XU Qi
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (4): 199-.  
    Abstract3349)   HTML    PDF(pc) (817KB)(8878)       Save
    The traditional Chinese family has long been characterized as patriarchal, patrilineal, and patrilocal, placing women at a severe social disadvantage in relation to men. Under such a system, sons were permanent members of the natal family and were expected to live with parents after marriage and contribute to their economic wellbeing. In contrast, daughters were temporary members of the natal family. Upon marriage, a woman was expected to serve her husband's extended family and bore no filial obligation to her own parents. Nevertheless, in recent years some studies have found that the tradition of sons as the sole provider for aging parents has undergone significant changes in contemporary China. To further investigate this issue, our study examines two aspects of intergenerational support: financial support and aging care, and highlights the gender difference between sons and daughters in this regard. Taking into consideration of the commonly practiced patrilocal living arrangement in China, we separate the gender difference between sons and daughters in care behaviors from the gender difference caused by living arrangement. The gender comparison data in this study is drawn from within the same family. China Family Panel Study (2010) provides the database for our analysis. Our finding indicates that sons still play a significantly greater role than daughters in providing support for their aging parents, however, this is only largely due to the fact that sons are most likely to live with or live in close proximity to their parents. If the variable of living arrangement is included, sons play a leading role in providing financial support but lag behind daughters in providing aging care. Discrepancy also exists between rural and urban families. While in rural China, it is still true that “sons give money and daughters provide care”; in cities, daughters have already outperformed sons in both aspects of financial support and aging care. Therefore, even though the Chinese tradition of relying on sons as the core provider of intergenerational support is still alive, significant changes have already occurred. Our study suggests that the rapid demographic transition and the improvement of socioeconomic status of women are the two primary contributors to such changes.
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    Longstanding Cultural Impact on Population Migration in Chinese History#br#
    LI Nan
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (4): 159-.  
    Abstract1875)   HTML    PDF(pc) (592KB)(7481)       Save
    Although social scientists and practitioners have long agreed that culture is an important determinant in the migration of populations, so far there has been no study, which provides empirical evidence of a causal relationship between culture and migration. Two things may have contributed to the lacking of empirical research on the subject. Culture is both a tangle and intangible concept, for which testable measures are difficult to design. Also, cultural change are incremental and subtle, and occur over a huge time. This makes it almost impossible to collect consistent historical data. In an attempt to overcome these shortcomings, this paper examines the impact of long term cultural change on interregional population migration by using generic distance from surnames as a measurable variable for cultural variation. The author compiled a database of the historical migration data in the last 1000 years. The finding indicates that the higher the cultural variation, the lower the migration activities. In other words, homogeneity of culture encourages migration while differences of cultures discourage migration. This finding stands the test of controlling variables such as socioeconomic and geographic elements. This study has established solid empirical evidence on the casual relation between culture and migration. Furthermore it contributes to the understanding of the characteristics and determinants of Chinese internal migration since the tenth century.
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    ZHANG Peiguo
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2006, 26 (4): 128-144.  
    Abstract871)      PDF(pc) (706KB)(6586)       Save
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    Project System and Its Impact on Relationship between Different Levels of Government
    CHEN Jiajian ZHANG Qiongwen HU Yu
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (5): 1-24.  
    Abstract1738)   HTML    PDF(pc) (2542KB)(5573)       Save
     In recent years, project initiatives became an important administrative vehicle of the Chinese state governance.Existing literature speculate without documented empirical data that the system has increased the control of higher level authorities over their subordinates,affecting the lower level governments’ ability for overall coordination.To verify such claims this study examines a central government sponsored project of microlending program for women in Sichuan province. The finding indicates that although the project system provides opportunities for more higher level government control,it also allows lower level governments more bargaining power as counter weight. Unlike the institutionalized administrative contract system,in which rights and responsibilities are fixed,the project system permits negotiation on a projecttoproject base,allowing lower level governments to extract terms beneficial to local interests. Therefore,it is not just a topdown one way control. It is a twoway fluid relationship that is constantly in negotiation, clarification and formalization. In our view,the project system has forced local governments to protect local interest by focusing on clarification of rules and regulations,and formalization of rights and responsibilities. This began to have a farreaching effect on local governance,as well as the relationship between different levels of governments, and between state and society.
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    Cited: Baidu(9)
    Administrative Subcontract
    ZHOU Li-An
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2014, 34 (6): 1-38.  
    Abstract12924)      PDF(pc) (1019KB)(3798)       Save
    Abstract: This paper attempts to demonstrate the significance, relevance and implications of “administrative subcontract” as an analytical framework to understand China’s intergovernmental relations, bureaucratic incentives, and administrative governance. As an ideal type, administrative subcontract refers to a subcontracting relation inside the government system, represent a hybrid governance structure between bureaucracy in a Weberian sense and pure subcontract which occurs among independent entities without any hierarchical relations. Administrative subcontract exhibits a coherent and consistent set of characteristics along the dimensions of authority relations, economic incentives, and internal control. With respect to authority relations, administrative subcontract features an allocation of authority between the principal and agent where the principal has the formal authority and residual control rights (such as the authority to appoint/remove, supervise and monitor subcontractors and the option to intervene when necessary), and the agent, by way of subcontracting, enjoys considerable discretion and de facto power to do things in his own way. Under the administrative subcontract regime, the agent is a residual claimant over the budget money or revenues either collected through serviceprovision or allocated by the principal. In terms of internal control, the administrative subcontract is outcomeoriented rather than procedure/processoriented. I argue that these three dimensions are complementary and mutually supportive, and tend to commove if the system encounters systematic shocks. This new framework helps us pin down the key and durable features of China’s intergovernmental relations and administrative governance. The notion of administrative subcontract enables us to reinterpret many puzzling observations and patterns regarding the workings of China’s government system and to bring some important and yet long understudied issues to our attention. I will also combine the theory of administrative subcontract with that of political tournaments to extend our analysis of China’s political incentives and governance. From the viewpoint of vertical subcontracting and horizontal (political) competition inside the government system, I attempt to explain the strength and weakness of China’s state capacity in various areas of public services. 
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    Cited: Baidu(61)
    A Theory of Social Performance:Modeling Cultural Pragmatics between Ritual and Strategy
    Jeffrey Charles Alexander
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (4): 1-.  
    Abstract1473)   HTML    PDF(pc) (1788KB)(3495)       Save
    Abstract: From its very beginnings, the social study of culture has been polarized between structuralist theories that treat meaning as a text and investigate the patterning that provides relative autonomy and pragmatist theories that treat meaning as emerging from the contingencies of individual and collective action—socalled practices—and that analyze cultural patterns as reflections of power and material interest. In this article, I present a theory of cultural pragmatics that transcends this division, bringing meaning structures, contingency, power, and materiality together in a new way. My argument is that the materiality of practices should be replaced by the more multidimensional concept of performances. Drawing on the new field of performance studies, cultural pragmatics demonstrates how social performances, whether individual or collective, can be analogized systematically to theatrical ones. After defining the elements of social performance, I suggest that these elements have become “defused” as societies have become more complex. Performances are successful only insofar as they can “refuse” these increasingly disentangled elements. In a fused performance, audiences identify with actors, and cultural scripts achieve verisimilitude through effective miseenscène. Performances fail when this relinking process is incomplete: the elements of performance remain apart, and social action seems inauthentic and artificial, failing to persuade. Refusion, by contrast, allows actors to communicate the meanings of their actions successfully and thus to pursue their interests effectively.
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    Cited: Baidu(1)
    LI Peilin
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2005, 25 (1): 7-27.  
    Abstract1376)      PDF(pc) (645KB)(3491)       Save
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    Between “Officials” and “Local Staff”: The Logic of the Empire and Personnel Management in the Chinese Bureaucracy
    ZHOU Xueguang
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2016, 36 (1): 1-33.  
    Abstract3132)   HTML    PDF(pc) (1505KB)(3480)       Save
    This article contrasts and examines two distinct modes of personnel management practices in the Chinese bureaucracy: (1) the historical pattern of the separation of officials and local staff (官吏分途); and (2) the contemporary pattern of stratified mobility (层级分流) among officials across levels of administrative jurisdictions. I argue that these two patterns, albeit distinct, have been rooted in the same institutional logic of governance in China, which are discussed and explicated in light of the “the Logic of the Chinese Empire” (Zhou 2014), especially in terms of the principal-agent problems associated with the scale of governance, the complementary role of formal and informal institutions, and the shift between symbolic vs. substantive authority in central-local government relationships.
    This article began with the observation that, in Chinese history, there was a sharp separation of officials (“guan”) and local staff (“li”) in personnel flows in the government bureaucracy. That is, officials were directly allocated across administrative jurisdictions nationwide by the central government, whereas “local staff” was recruited locally and they stayed within the same administrative jurisdiction for life. This long-standing practice generated a huge divide between these two groups, with distinct career paths, incentives, and bases of interest articulation.
    In contrast, a different pattern of personnel management practice—the pattern of stratified mobility—has emerged in the Chinese bureaucracy in the People's Republic. All cadres are treated as agents of the state. But, most officials tend to stay within their administrative jurisdictions for their entire careers and only a small group of top officials from selected offices and bureaus are able to move to the immediate higher-level administrative jurisdiction and, hence, enjoy a broader scope of mobility in the higher-level jurisdiction. One implication of this pattern is that dense social networks emerge horizontally within administrative jurisdictions and vertically across immediate administrative levels. Another implication is that officials at each level of the bureaucracy acquire the double identity as “officials” serving as the agents of the state and, at the same time, as the “local staff” who form alliance with local interests. These arguments are illustrated using the empirical data for personnel mobility in the Chinese bureaucracy in two prefectures in Jiangsu Province, from 1990 to 2008. This article concludes with a discussion on the implications of personnel management practices for China's governance. These practices and the resulting mobility patterns have provided stable institutional bases for central-local government relationships, and they have set limits to the downward reach of the state and the upward reach of local interests, and helped shape distinctive institutional practice in governing China.
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    Determinants of the Age of First Marriage: A Study Based on CGSS2006
    WANG Peng | WU Yuxiao
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2013, 33 (3): 89-110.  
    Abstract4333)      PDF(pc) (1125KB)(3301)       Save
    With the data from “2006 Chinese Social Survey”(CGSS2006),this paper investigates the change trend in the age of first marriage and its socioeconomic origins using the event history analysis model. Education, occupation and family socioeconomic status are found to be significantly related to the age of first marriage, with considerable differences between men and women, and between urban and rural residential registration. First, higher education, in general, is associated with later marriage; more so for women than for men, with this effect being the strongest for the women in the rural areas. Second, among the men who have rural registration (hukou), those in professional occupations marry earlier than those with nonskilled, non managerial jobs. Third, in the urban population, the higher the parents’ education attainment is, the later their children get married for the first time but the number of siblings correlates with an earlier marriage. Lastly, regardless of hukou location (urban or rural), father’s managerial position, in contrast to having a skilled job, is associated with his child’s earlier marriage. Father’s managerial position is associated with his son’s younger age of first marriage, especially so if their hukou is in the rural areas. Taken together, these findings answer to the marriage hypothesis from the modernization theory, that is, an individual’s education, occupation and family socioeconomic status all significantly affect the age of first marriage; but in the rural areas where traditional characteristics are more prominent, existing differences in fathers’ occupations have a more substantial impact on their children’s age of first marriage. Therefore, age of first marriage is not only a matter of an individual’s choice, but also closely relates to macrolevel factors such as social stratification, the hukou system, and the urbanrural structure.
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    Cited: Baidu(9)
    A Theory of Social Performance: Modeling Cultural Pragmatics between Ritual and Strategy
    Jeffrey Charles Alexander
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (3): 1-36.  
    Abstract1852)   HTML    PDF(pc) (1209KB)(2923)       Save
    From its very beginnings, the social study of culture has been polarized between structuralist theories that treat meaning as a text and investigate the patterning that provides relative autonomy and pragmatist theories that treat meaning as emerging from the contingencies of individual and collective action—socalled practices—and that analyze cultural patterns as reflections of power and material interest. In this article, I present a theory of cultural pragmatics that transcends this division, bringing meaning structures, contingency, power, and materiality together in a new way. My argument is that the materiality of practices should be replaced by the more multidimensional concept of performances. Drawing on the new field of performance studies, cultural pragmatics demonstrates how social performances, whether individual or collective, can be analogized systematically to theatrical ones. After defining the elements of social performance, I suggest that these elements have become “defused” as societies have become more complex. Performances are successful only insofar as they can “refuse” these increasingly disentangled elements. In a fused performance, audiences identify with actors, and cultural scripts achieve verisimilitude through effective miseenscène. Performances fail when this relinking process is incomplete: the elements of performance remain apart, and social action seems inauthentic and artificial, failing to persuade. Refusion, by contrast, allows actors to communicate the meanings of their actions successfully and thus to pursue their interests effectively.
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    Cited: Baidu(1)
    YANG Zhigang
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2006, 26 (1): 23-35.  
    Abstract1232)      PDF(pc) (578KB)(2711)       Save
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    Back to Historical Views, Reconstructing the Imagination of Sociology: New Tradition of Classical and Historical Studies in Modern Chinese Transformation
    QU Jingdong
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (1): 1-25.  
    Abstract1968)   HTML    PDF(pc) (871KB)(2650)       Save

    Historical perspectives are the way to reconstruct the imagination of sociology, as classical sociologists did. There are many historical dimensions in Karl Marx’s social studies: dialectical analysis on history of nature; structural perspective on prehistory of the present and history of the present; reconstructed narratives of historical events; and finally, evolution of family, ownership, state, and social formations. In the same sense, in order to understand the reality of Chinese sociey, we’d better examine the transformation of modern Chinese social thoughts and their contexts. By reinterpreting theory of the Three Eras from classics Spring and Autumn Annals, Kang Youwei proposed that the establishment of the Idea of Cosmos Unity as the universal value for world history and the building of Confucius Religion for cultivation of mores had resulted in the successful transformation of Chinese society from Era of War to Era of Peace. On the contrary, Zhang Taiyan upheld the tradition of “Six Classics are all Histories”, and pushed forward the academic change from classics to history, which was carried out by Wang Guowei and Chen Yinke. Through the method of synthetical deduction in social sciences, Wang Guowei interpreted classics by history in the work of Institutional Change in Yin and Zhou Dynasty, confirming the original principle of Zhou Regime and Etiquette on basis of patriarchal clan system, and its spirit of law, mores and institutions. On the other hand, Chen Yinke investigated thoroughly the Middle Age of Chinese history from perspective of concourse and interattestation, and outlined a historical landscape of interfusion between Hu and Han nationalities, mixing of various religions, migration of diverse crowds, and integration of different cultures and mores. In short, there are two waves of change of thoughts in Chinese modern transformation, which set up the new tradition of Classical and Historical Studies, and institutional and spiritual sources of social and political construction from then on.

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    Cited: Baidu(8)
    Lesbian Women’s Marriages and Families: A Challenge to the Traditional Marriage System
    CHEN Ya-ya
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2009, 29 (4): 107-129.  
    Abstract4586)      PDF(pc) (886KB)(2642)       Save

    Gay marriages have attracted attention in reports and studies in recent years, but there are very few studies of lesbian marriages. Lesbian marriages significantly differ from those among gay men and the two should not be put into the same category. With the method of Internet participation observation, this paper examines the Chinese lesbian women’s marriages and families. The author selected three focal topics in the Internet forums: marriage in form only, extramarital affairs, and parentchild relationships. The analysis was around the reality of the marriagerelated pressures and dilemmas experienced by the lesbians. The reflection was about the limitations of the traditional marriage system and its expulsion of the homosexual partnership. Finally, a proposal was advanced that we should gradually raise people’s awareness so that it would be possible to have the traditional marriage system revised so that all parties involved would enjoy a satisfying identity and life security.

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    LI Qiang
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2005, 25 (1): 28-42.  
    Abstract1079)      PDF(pc) (466KB)(2415)       Save
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    Market, Institution and Network: Three Explanatory Paradigms of Industrial Development
    Liang Bo;Wang Haiying
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2010, 30 (6): 90-117.  
    Abstract2598)      PDF(pc) (1504KB)(2373)       Save

    Industrial development has been an important issue in social science research. Three explanatory paradigms on this topic have emerged from the existing theories. They are the marketism paradigm represented by the neoclassic industry theories; the institutionalism paradigm represented by the historical institutionalism school and the organizational institutionalism school in economic sociology; and the networkism paradigm represented by the theories of networks and social capital. These theoretical paradigms take market mechanism, institution, policies in the industry, industrial networks, and social capital as the core explanatory factors for industrial development. Accordingly, in some sense, these paradigms have a transparent inclination of “marketdeterminism”, “institutiondeterminism”, and “networkdeterminism”, respectively.

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    The Essence of Trust and Its Culture
    ZHAI Xuewei
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2014, 34 (1): 1-26.  
    Abstract4205)      PDF(pc) (870KB)(2330)       Save
    With more attention to the study of trust, interpreting trust in different disciplines and sciences is becoming increasingly complex, so is the controversy about it. One of the most concerned issues is the tendency of researchers to divide trust into two kinds: special trust and universal trust. The advantage of such a division is for classification so that institutions and relations, and cultures and cultural differences can be conducted empirically. However, this paper contends otherwise. The author returns to common sense and cultural backgrounds to discuss trust, suggesting that trust can be divided into trust without or with constraint mechanisms based on its expressed characteristics. Such classification can reveal cultural differences in the expression of trust which may lead to trust zone shifting in social practices. In the Chinese culture, trust is formed in the intermediate zone when suspiciousness rises in social interaction. According to the degree of suspiciousness, the trust zone can be further subdivided into ease relations, trust relations, and notrust relations. These features are evidenced in Confucian discourses and the characteristics of Chinese human relations. The author holds that this classification originates in the structural biases of trust relations coming from the assumptions of human nature and its social dependence in the Chinese and Western cultures: the former is biased toward the socialnetwork control and the latter towards institutional constraints. But in either way, the essence of trust is spacetime maintenance of the object upon whom one is dependent when social members are facing heightened social uncertainty and complexity. If this comparative research framework is used to reprocess previous studies on China’s social trust controversy and perplex, including particularism and universalism, more reasonable explanations could be found for many aspects.
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    Cited: Baidu(13)
    Higher Education,Elite Formation and Social Stratification in Contemporary China
    WU Xiaogang
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2016, 36 (3): 1-31.  
    Abstract3114)   HTML    PDF(pc) (1632KB)(2288)       Save

    Higher education plays an undoubtedly important role in promoting social mobility in modern society. Previous literatures tend to focus on the comparison between those with college degree and those without treating the former as a homogeneous group and the schooling process as a "black-box". This article introduces the background and research design of the Beijing College Students Panel Survey (BCSPS),and analyzes the first wave of the data to investigate social stratification within the Chinese higher education system,paying special attention to the roles of family backgrounds, special admission policy,and key-point high school in the process. Results show that,while family socioeconomic status and residence locations continue to exert direct influence on likelihood of getting into three tiers of universities (national elite university, "211"university and other non-"211"university),key-point high school and special admission policy serve as the important mechanisms in this process. Attending a key-point high school can help students achieve higher scores in college entrance examination and thus ensure the equitable access to college education; special admission policy apparently benefits those from better family backgrounds. Moreover, those in the national elite universities are more likely to join in the party than their counterparts in other universities, although their intentions are lower. These findings bear important implications for understanding the role of higher education in elite formation and social stratification in contemporary China.

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    Cited: Baidu(3)
    The Endogeneity Problem in Quantitative Analysis: A Review of Estimating Causal Effects of Social Interaction
    Chen Yunsong , Fan Xiaoguang
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2010, 30 (4): 91-117.  
    Abstract5832)      PDF(pc) (1671KB)(2204)       Save

     Causeeffect relationships are the core area in sociological analysis. However,

    sociological analysis based on survey data is confronted by the endogeneity problem which plagues

    causal inferences. Many existing studies aiming at providing explanations for social phenomena

    either merely describes the statistical associations among variables or arrives at problematic

    causal conclusions. Focusing on the social interaction studies, this paper addresses the major

    sources of potential endogeneity biases, namely, the omitted variable bias, selfselection bias

    , sampleselection bias and the simultaneity bias. Useful model identification strategies for

    correcting these problems are reviewed. Based on CGSS2003, this paper also discusses how to

    partially correct for the endogeneity problem through augmenting the volume of survey data.

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    Institutions and Life for People with Disability: From “Individual Model” to “Universal Model”
    YANG Zeng
    Chinese Journal of Sociology    2015, 35 (6): 85-115.  
    Abstract1385)   HTML    PDF(pc) (798KB)(2194)       Save
    The last two decades have witnessed a dramatic increase in both the number of people with disability and the social services provided for them. However, sociological studies on the matter are evidently lacking. This paper examines the history of social service for the disabled in the United States and the United Kingdom. Both countries experienced changes in the institution and life of the disabled from the medical model and individual support welfare model to the social model and universal model.The social and universal models of disability offer a critique of “healthism”, a notion that people with disability are different to “what is healthy”. The social and universal models treat people with disability not as objects of medical treatment and social protection but “subjects” of life. Such thinking is not unfamiliar in China as well. In practice, institution and life experience intersect, and proper channels should be provided for the disabled to give feedback on any institutional shortcomings in meeting their needs. By examining this historical change in the UK and the US we can gain a better understanding of our own situation and give room for further reform.
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