Golden Goose

The Story of a Peasant Family in Western China

  • Xu Liu
  • David Burnett

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xx
  2. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 1-23
  3. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 25-41
  4. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 43-58
  5. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 59-73
  6. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 75-86
  7. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 87-98
  8. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 99-111
  9. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 113-126
  10. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 127-138
  11. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 139-151
  12. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 153-162
  13. Xu Liu, David Burnett
    Pages 163-183
  14. Back Matter
    Pages 185-186

About this book


This book offers an intimate and personal look at what China's poverty alleviation has meant for individuals. The dramatic progress in reducing poverty in China over the past three decades is well known. According to the World Bank, more than 500 million people were lifted out of extreme poverty as China’s poverty rate fell from 88 percent in 1981 to 6.5 percent in 2012. Behind this statistic are the millions of families in rural China who have moved from extreme poverty to a more comfortable way of life in modern China. This is the story of four generations of one such family. Grandma Zhen and her eight children have faced the hardship of war, the great famine of 1958-1960, the Cultural Revolution of 1967-1977 and Opening-up and Reform. They have had to adjust to a rapidly changing culture that has affected all aspects of their lives, including marriage, the one-child policy, and education. Through incredible endurance and hard work, they have not only survived, but thrived. This book will be of value to anthropologists, developmental economists, sinophiles, and more.

Xu Liu is a researcher at Sichuan Normal University, China and received her PhD from Institute of Education, University College London. She is familiar with the local culture and customs. Most crucially she speaks the local dialect, which was instrumental in carrying out the interviews for this book. 

David Burnett, with a PhD in Anthropology from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, taught at Sichuan Normal University, China from 2006-2013 and is now a Professor Emeritus. He is author of several books, including Western Civilization: A Study for Chinese Students, and a Fellow of the Royal Anthropological Institute.


China Rural Development History of a family Poverty Alleviation Sociology

Authors and affiliations

  • Xu Liu
    • 1
  • David Burnett
    • 2
  1. 1.Sichuan Normal UniversityChengduChina
  2. 2.Sichuan Normal UniversityChengduChina

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd., part of Springer Nature 2019
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Singapore
  • eBook Packages Economics and Finance Economics and Finance (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-981-13-3773-4
  • Online ISBN 978-981-13-3774-1
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Finance, Business & Banking