Technology and/as Governmentality: The Production of Young Rural Women as Low-Tech Laboring Subjects in China Academic Article uri icon


  • This article presents an ethnography of a group of young women from rural China who attended a three-month computer-training course and then were placed in a data input company in China. Building upon scholarship on "Chinese governmentality," I argue that although the training emphasized individual "quality" (suzhi) and the attainment of "useful" skills, once the women were employed their choices as autonomous individuals were severely limited through workplace disciplines that problematize notions of self government. I show how multiple modes of power were deployed to produce rural women as low-tech laboring subjects necessary for China's domestic development and participation in global capitalism. © 2013 National Communication Association.

altmetric score

  • 1.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Wallis, C.

citation count

  • 5

publication date

  • December 2013