Outsourcing Repression: Everyday State Power in Contemporary ChinaVIEW EVENT DETAILS
China Wise book series
The Chinese state exercises state power to control or coerce its citizens, but when does the state find it beneficial to cede its legitimate monopoly of violence and outsource repression to nonstate actors? Is engaging with anyone from violent street gangsters to nonviolent grassroots brokers to coerce and mobilize masses an efficient way of minimizing backlash to the state? And what are the consequences for ordinary citizens when they are being harassed by “thugs-for-hire” or “persuaded” by brokers in their community when facing injustice such as land grabs and housing demolition?
In her award-winning book, Outsourcing Repression: Everyday State Power in Contemporary China, Lynette Ong draws on extensive field research conducted annually from 2011 to 2019 — the years from Chinese Presidents Hu Jintao to Xi Jinping — in a study of ordinary citizens who have undergone land grabs and housing demolition in China during years of rapid urbanization growth. Ong exposes one of the core problems with China’s development model: the central government pursues economic growth at the expense of citizens’ rights, with the practice of outsourced repression playing an important role.
Join us in person on June 28 with Lynette Ong, Senior Fellow at the Asia Society Policy Institute's Center for China Analysis and Professor of Political Science at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, University of Toronto, as she speaks with Bates Gill, Executive Director at the Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis about her book, Outsourcing Repression: Everyday State Power in Contemporary China.
This event is the sixth in our China Wise book series, co-organized by the Asia Society Center on U.S.-China Relations and Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis (CCA).
Books will be available for sale at the event.
Lynette H. Ong is Senior Fellow on Chinese Society at the Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis and Professor of Political Science at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, the University of Toronto. Her research lies at the intersection of authoritarian politics, contentious politics, and the political economy of development. She is the author of Outsourcing Repression: Everyday State Power in Contemporary China (Oxford University Press, 2022), The Street and the Ballot Box: Interactions between Social Movements and Electoral Politics in Authoritarian Contexts (Cambridge University Press, Elements Series in Contentious Politics, 2022), and Prosper or Perish: Credit and Fiscal Systems in Rural China (Cornell University Press, 2012). Her publications have also appeared in Perspectives on Politics, Comparative Politics, Journal of Democracy, Foreign Affairs, China Quarterly, and China Journal, among other outlets. Outsourcing Repression is the recipient of the American Sociological Association Gordon Hirabayashi Human Rights Book Award and the International Studies Association Human Rights Section Best Book Award, and the project has been shortlisted for the inaugural Routledge Area Studies (Impact) Award 2022.
Dr. Bates Gill is Executive Director of Asia Society Policy Institute’s Center for China Analysis where he leads a team of research fellows, associated researchers, and administrative staff to deliver on the Center’s aim to be a global leader for policy-relevant, objective analysis of China’s politics, economy, and society and its impact on Asia and the world.
Prior to joining the Asia Society, Bates held a number of research and academic leadership positions in the Indo-Pacific, Europe and United States. Most recently, he was professor and chair of the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University in Sydney and was also the inaugural Scholar-in-Residence with the Asia Society Australia. In other previous roles, he served as director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), as the Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and as founding director of the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution.
Among his other professional affiliations, Bates is a Senior Associate Fellow with the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) in London and serves on the Board of Governors of the Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore and on the Board of Advisors of the National Bureau of Asian Research.
The author or editor of nine books on China- and Asia-related topics, his most recent book, Daring to Struggle: China’s Global Ambitions under Xi Jinping was published in 2022 by Oxford University Press. He has more than 200 other publications and conducted research-related travel to more than 50 countries. Bates has consulted for corporations, government agencies, and philanthropic organizations, lectured widely and provided U.S. Congressional and other parliamentary testimony related to Asian and global affairs, and made more than 600 appearances in print, broadcast and digital media.
He received his Ph.D. in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia, lived and worked in China for two years, and has made more than 60 working visits to the country. Bates received the Royal Order of the Commander of the Polar Star, the highest award bestowed up foreigners by the Swedish monarch, for his contributions to Swedish interests.