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Chinese Labor in a Korean FactoryClass, Ethnicity, and Productivity on the Shop Floor in Globalizing China$
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Jaesok Kim

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780804784542

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804784542.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.xiv) (p.1) ONE Introduction
Source:
Chinese Labor in a Korean Factory
Author(s):

Jaesok Kim

Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804784542.003.0001

Discusses how the non-western origin of Nawon, a multinational garment corporation located in Qingdao, China, contributed to creating a specific form of locally embedded globalization. The Nawon management’s argument for the superiority of global or universal managerial principles and practices hid its local characteristics that originated from the historical memories, politics, and culture of South Korea and China. From the main thread, this chapter introduces concepts of culture, ethnicity, nationality, and post-socialism to discuss the construction of a managerial hierarchy and workforce divisions at the workplace. The incessant pressure from the global chain of garment production to reduce production costs shaped and changed the factory regime of the company, which was caught in a web of collusion between global capital and local government and struggled to maintain its business in China. This chapter also discusses the conditions of (im)possibility of workers’ resistance against the factory regime.

Keywords:   global capitalism, factory regime, ethnic minority, commodity chain, globalization, localization, multinational corporations (MNCs), post-socialism, fieldwork, special economic zones (SEZs)

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