By Haoxiang Dai
Education has become one of the most concerned topics for Chinese people, while Chinese house prices rose rapidly in the past ten years, leading to a systematic injustice overlapping these two fields.
House price in China has been unusual high for a decade or even more. For survival, people can just rent a house because rent fee is very low compared to the ridiculous house price. However, nowadays, many rules come out requiring people to buy a school district room otherwise their children cannot go to school. The rule also made requirements about the area of the room and the length of living time. It all turns out that whether children can get good educational resources has nothing to do with the children’s talent and endeavor. The only thing that matters is the wealth and social status of children’s parents. Education is already unfair for students before facing the so-called the most equitable “The national college entrance exam”. Meanwhile, the phenomenon forces all parents under the pressure of unusual high house price, extracting their hard-earned money to the pocket of real estate companies which represent a group of upper classes.
This instance reminds me of Spivak’s “Can the Subaltern Speak?”. Like Spivak points out that “the terms ‘people’ and ‘subaltern classes’ [are] used as synonymous throughout [Guha’s definition]” (page 26). The word “Subaltern” defines a group of people oppressed by power. In this case, general Chinese people are forced to afford the sky-high house price for their children’s future. Otherwise, they and their children will be considered as “Others”. As a result, there are so many Chinese families under the pressure of house loans and making money for real estate companies for decades. General people don’t have right to speak. They can only follow the rules made by authorities. However, the reason why it is systematic injustice is the government has strong relationship to these real estate companies. Through bonding sky-high house price with children’s future, Chinese families’ hard-earned money is extracted to authorities for decades. And what is worse, when these children grow up and get married, they have to face the same problem as their parents.
Link 1: https://www.sixthtone.com/news/1002882/chinese-parents-are-paying-a-high-price-for-free-education
Link 2: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/07/04/china-cost-of-education/2489899/
Spivak’s “Can the Subaltern Speak?”. Class Material.
Ni Dandan. (2018). Chinese Parents Are Paying a High Price for Free Education. SIXTH TONE. Retrieved from https://www.sixthtone.com/news/1002882/chinese-parents-are-paying-a-high-price-for-free-education
Calum MacLeod. (2013). Sky-high house prices surround China’s top schools. USA TODAY. Retrieved from https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/07/04/china-cost-of-education/2489899/