Demographic Structure and Process in Rural China

  • Dudley L. Poston
  • Mary Ann Davis
  • Danielle Xiaodan Deng
Part of the International Handbooks of Population book series (IHOP, volume 3)


This chapter covers the major issues of rural demography in the People’s Republic of China. We first provide some perspective for our discussions by presenting an overview of China, its history and recent emergence as a world power, followed by a short discussion of its demography. We then cover the thorny issue of the definition in China of rurality, followed by a discussion of the changing nature of the rural-urban population distribution in China since 1949. We next consider rural-urban socioeconomic disparities, the age and sex structures of rural and urban China, and then marital status. Next, we review key issues pertaining to fertility, mortality, and migration in rural and urban China, and finally, we assess the situation of the minority nationalities in rural China.


Total Fertility Rate Qing Dynasty Chinese Communist Party Crude Birth Rate Hukou System 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dudley L. Poston
    • 1
  • Mary Ann Davis
    • 2
  • Danielle Xiaodan Deng
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SociologyTexas A&M UniversityCollege StationUSA
  2. 2.Department of SociologySam Houston State UniversityHuntsvilleUSA

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