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The Politics of Law and Stability in China

Edited by Susan Trevaskes, Griffith University, Elisa Nesossi, Australian National University, Flora Sapio, The Chinese University of Hong Kong and Sarah Biddulph, University of Melbourne, Australia
The Politics of Law and Stability in China examines the nexus between social stability and the law in contemporary China. It explores the impact of Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) rationales for social stability on legal reforms, criminal justice operations and handling of disputes and social unrest inside and outside China’s justice agencies.
Extent: 304 pp
Hardback Price: $130.00 Web: $117.00
Publication Date: 2014
ISBN: 978 1 78347 386 1
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  • Asian Studies
  • Asian Law
  • Asian Politics and Policy
  • Law - Academic
  • Asian Law
  • Human Rights
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Asian Politics
The Politics of Law and Stability in China examines the nexus between social stability and the law in contemporary China. It explores the impact of Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) rationales for social stability on legal reforms, criminal justice operations and handling of disputes and social unrest inside and outside China’s justice agencies.

The book presents an extensive investigation into the conceptual and empirical approaches by the Party-state to the management of Chinese citizen complaint and unrest. It explores how the Party-state responds to what it sees as potentially de-stabilizing social action such as public protest, discord, deviance and criminal behaviour. This timely and important study reaches across a broad variety of areas within the legal sphere, including substantive criminal law and criminal procedure law reform, labour law, environment and land disputes, policing and surveillance, and anti-corruption drives. The central thread running through all the chapters concerns how the imperative of social stability has underpinned key Party-state approaches to social management and responses to crime, legal disputes and social unrest across the last decade in China.

This book will appeal to lawyers, political science scholars and social scientists in the area of China studies. Scholars generally interested in Chinese criminal law and criminal law procedures will also find much in this book that will be of interest to them.
‘Valuable with insightful analysis and powerful discourse on the implications of its topics. The book makes a clear contribution to the literature on the interdependent relationship between politics and law in mainland China.’
– Siyu Liu, Criminal Law Bulletin

‘This fascinating book explores how issues of law and justice are being re-defined by China’s obsession with ‘social stability’ and how this might impact upon claims to legitimacy that the Party-state advances. A first-rate team of experts put their lens on a wide range of important areas including trial and settlement practices, administrative law, criminal justice, environmental pollution, labor relations, land ownership, policing and welfare. Each contribution offers key insights into how we should understand the effects of China’s response to increasing social discord.’
– Mike McConville, The Chinese University of Hong Kong

‘Overall, the editors and contributors of this book have presented an impressive work that would appeal to lawyers, scholars, students in political science. Those who are interested in Chinese studies will also be attracted to the book. . . This volume gives its readers a real insight into the causes of social unrest and instability in contemporary.’
– Gary Lung, Alternative Law Journal
Contributors: S. Biddulph, D. Peng, X. He, F. Hualing, G. Zhiyuan, E. Nesossi, M. Palmer, F. Sapio, M. S. Tanner, S. Trevaskes, B. van Rooij, Z. Wanhong
CONTENTS
Preface
1. Stability and the law
Susan Trevaskes, Elisa Nesossi, Flora Sapio and Sarah Biddulph
2. Management of stability in labour relations
Sarah Biddulph
3. ‘If we award this case to you, all the Chinese people would come to us for justice!’ Land taking cases in the shadow of social stability
Xin He
4. Ripples across stagnant water: stability, legal activism and water pollution disputes in rural China
Zhang Wanhong and Ding Peng
5. Regulation by escalation: unrest, lawmaking and law enforcement in China
Benjamin van Rooij
6. Mediating state and society: social stability and administrative suits
Michael Palmer
7. Death sentencing for stability and harmony
Susan Trevaskes
8. Criminal procedure, law reform and stability
Zhiyuan Guo
9. Stability and anticorruption initiatives: Is there a Chinese model?
Fu Hualing
10. The impact of the 2009 people’s armed police law on the people’s armed police force
Murray Scot Tanner
11. Detention, stability and ‘social management innovation’
Elisa Nesossi
12. The invisible hand of government: the conceptual origins of social management innovation
Flora Sapio
13. Framing the stability imperative
Susan Trevaskes, Elisa Nesossi, Flora Sapio, Sarah Biddulph

Index