Tropical Geography ›› 2023, Vol. 43 ›› Issue (7): 1339-1350.doi: 10.13284/j.cnki.rddl.003702

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The Citizenization of Villagers in the Transition of Urban Villages: Taking Yangji Village in Guangzhou as an Example

Jieying Chen1(), Yungang Liu2()   

  1. 1.Department of Geographic Sciences, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
    2.School of Geography, South China Normal University, Guangzhou 510631, China
  • Received:2022-01-19 Revised:2023-05-09 Online:2023-07-05 Published:2023-08-02
  • Contact: Yungang Liu;


China's new urbanization strategy emphasizes the need to help more people enjoy equal access to urban public services while increasing the urbanization rate. With the implementation of the new urbanization strategy, how the villagers of the original rural settlements surrounded by the urban landscape (i.e., urban villages) turn into citizens (i.e., citizenization) has attracted much attention. However, few studies have attempted to deconstruct the influence of the entire change process in urban villages on the process of villagers' citizenization by associating the fate of villagers with external urbanization. To make up for this research gap, this study took Yangji Village of Guangzhou as an example, using the theoretical framework of citizenization to analyze the process and results of citizenization of villagers from the three perspectives of identity, economy, and cultural citizenization, focusing on discussing the relationship between the changes of Yangji Village and the citizenization of villagers and the lagging problems of citizenization of villagers in urban villages to realize a deep discussion on the phenomenon of identity change of villagers in urban villages and clarify the general characteristics and special process of citizenization of urban villages. The results found that: 1) the basic path of citizenization of villagers in urban villages was that farmers acquire urban household registration and urban employment opportunities in the process of land expropriation by the government and gradually realize citizenization by integrating into the social division of labor; 2) the citizenization process of villagers in urban villages can be roughly divided into three stages: the village period, the urban village period, and community relocation period; 3) the government's land acquisition and housing rental behaviors promoted the transformation of villagers' occupation and cultural psychology, while the urban village reconstruction improved the income of the villagers, enhanced the cultural atmosphere of the community, and further promoted the citizenization process of the villagers' identity, occupation, and culture; 4) the reconstruction of urban villages boosted the citizenization process of villagers on the whole. However, the citizenization of villagers was not only the transformation of living space behind the transformation but also affected by the location of urban villages, village collective cadres, external social environment, individual subjective initiatives, and others. The realization of citizenization requires villagers to have a real sense of citizenship, change their way of life, and discard unreasonable traditional ideas. In this process, the government should establish an effective social security mechanism to help land-lost farmers enjoy the same rights as urban citizens regarding employment, social security, housing, education, and other aspects. In addition, community activities or modern media should help less-educated villagers accept the new culture, improve their ideological quality, realize the institutional and normative nature of urban civilization, and enhance their awareness of public services.

Key words: new urbanization, urban village, citizenization, village change, Guangzhou City

CLC Number: 

  • TU984.114