Making the Place Work: Managing Labour in Early Modern China
Gerritsen explores the management of labour in the porcelain manufactures of early modern China. She focuses on the manufactures of Jingdezhen, where the majority of blue-and-white ceramics for export from China to the wider world were made. The production of porcelain for global markets required a large labour force locally, especially because at the same time these kilns manufactured for the imperial court and for consumers throughout the Chinese empire. The imperial kilns worked in close collaboration with the private kilns that manufactured for domestic use as well as for export. Through an exploration of sixteenth-century gazetteers, this chapter shows the challenges of managing that labour force.