Marx’s Theories and Beyond: Understanding Working-Class Solidarity in China

Ngai PUN*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Derived from post-industrial society experiences, current social theorists often argue that the working class no longer plays an active role in transforming society, thereby making the issue of working-class solidarity obsolete. This paper critically revisits Marx’s theories on solidarity and re-engages the debates by intersecting macro structural analysis with micro-foundation of working-class solidarity. The article formulates the concept of working-class solidarity in two layers of analysis: the first is a macro structural approach driven by class conflict, social grievance, and economic crisis directly connected to the social transformation of the neoliberal market economy; and the second looks at micro process of cooperation and mutual support at the level of everyday practice, that is, a collective-emotional environment that creates agency and a soft solidarity base for building bonds among working-class youth. The logic of solidarity is rescued through a multiplicity of working-class youth’s behaviors discovered in school and the workplace.
Original languageEnglish
Article number089692052211054
Pages (from-to)1237-1252
Number of pages16
JournalCritical Sociology
Issue number7-8
Early online date22 Jun 2022
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.


  • Karl Marx
  • working class
  • youth
  • solidarity
  • China


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