December 13, 2010

The Ant Tribe

This is what many of my students face as they graduate from college: a China where six million university graduates fight for the same jobs. A China where the average salary for a migrant worker (blue collar job) has increased 80 percent since 2003 and the college graduates' salary has stayed the same.

Chinese sociologists have come up with a new term for educated young people who move in search of work like Ms. Liu: the ant tribe. It is a reference to their immense numbers — at least 100,000 in Beijing alone — and to the fact that they often settle into crowded neighborhoods, toiling for wages that would give even low-paid factory workers pause.

“Like ants, they gather in colonies, sometimes underground in basements, and work long and hard,”

Read the full article from The New York Times.

1The New York Time By ANDREW JACOBS Published: December 11, 2010

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