The Reign of Market: Institutional Setting, Business Cycle, and Strikes in Hong Kong

  • Stephen ChiuEmail author
Part of the Nonprofit and Civil Society Studies book series (NCSS)


How market forces shape social actions has always been an important theme in social analysis. Since the “long sixteenth century,” the capitalist market has ushered in a new era of human history. Spreading from the capitalist core of Northeastern Europe, commodification and accumulation have become the organizing principles of the modern world (Wallerstein 1974). The advent of the market has given rise to new forms of collective action such as strikes, or the temporary withdrawal of labor power by workers. Strikes have been the most direct form of protest of the working class against the perceived injustices arising from the operation of a market economy. Although in many places strikes now only occur infrequently, they have developed from a novel tactic used by disgruntled workers into a feature of our everyday life. Strikes have indeed come to be the modal form of working class collective action in a market society (Tarrow 1994).


Business Cycle Collective Action Real Wage Market Force Industrial Relation 
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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyChinese University of Hong KongHong KongPeople’s Republic of China

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