Change in some aspects of Chinese core values, 1978-1988 Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/3484zk30t

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  • Great change has taken place in China during the past decade. As core values represent the most basic aspects of social life, change in some aspects of Chinese core values indicates that China is moving rapidly from being an agricultural society toward becoming a modern industrial society. China today can be regarded as undergoing a process of modernization in which basic institutions are being altered to accommodate industrial development. Change was initiated by the policy of reform and opening to the outside world in 1978, and in this sense represents politically planned change. Change in China is also evolutionary in character and is influenced by the diffusion of foreign cultural traits into the country. These foreign traits not only conflict with traditional Chinese culture but also have impacted core values causing them to change. In order to examine the extent to which change in core values has taken place in China during the past decade and analyse the relationships between the process of modernization and change in core values, six case studies of Chinese students at Oregon State University were conducted. Several periodicals which contain recent information and reports on the expression of value changes in China were used to complement the case studies. Anthropological sources related to the theory of culture change and modernization served as the major theoretical references. The results of this study indicate that change has taken place in several aspects of Chinese core values: from morality to material gain, from social harmony to competition, from collective duty to individual rights and from uniformity to diversity. Social problems that have emerged in China today along with these changes are being accepted as the necessary price of China's modernization program.
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