The South China Silk District

Local Historical Transformation and World System Theory

By Alvin Y. So

Subjects: Chinese Studies
Paperback : 9780887063220, 206 pages, November 1986
Hardcover : 9780887063213, 206 pages, November 1986

Table of contents

List of Tables and Figures


One World-System Perspective and Local Studies

Two The South China Silk District

Three Precapitalist Social Formations

Four Incorporation

Five Commercialization of Agriculture

Six Industrialization

Seven Proletarianization

Eight Cyclical Development

Nine Conclusion



Appendix: Weights and Currency Conversions



The material in this book is framed and organized through the themes of world system's theory -- such as incorporation, commercialization of agriculture, industrialization, proletarianization, and the cyclical rhythm of the capitalist world-system.

The whole range of sericulture is examined from the production process, the social and technical problems, and the motives of cultivators, to how this form of agriculture changed over time. This text, replete with concrete and historical detail, offers carefully researched data of interest to sociologists and sinologists, as well as those in anthropology, economics, political science, and history.

Alvin Y. So is Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.


"This is an important book on a subject of significance both to sociologists and sinologists. It is based on a rare combination of serious theoretical and empirical (including primary) research. It is the first serious attempt to explore the strengths and limits of world system theory in a Chinese context, the first that is to do so through a serious empirical study. " -- Mark Selden