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China Daily Website  

Promote healthy urbanization

Updated: 2014-11-17 07:54
(China Daily)

China's urbanization drive has helped reform the social structure to a certain extent. But since millions of farmers have become migrant workers and started settling down in cities, traditional rural culture is gradually disappearing.

Village culture, or folk culture, reflects the conventional lifestyle of Chinese farmers, and is deeply rooted in their everyday life. The problem is, this culture is incompatible with urban culture.

Several months ago, the media reported the conflict between a couple from the Chinese mainland and some Hong Kong residents because the former had helped their child to urinate at a roadside curb. A child urinating on a road would not have drawn any public attention in rural areas of the mainland. But in Hong Kong, it is seen as uncivil behavior.

To some extent, this incident reflects the cultural gap between urban and rural residents. Sometimes some urban residents do look down upon rural people, but in most of such cases the reason is not economic status, but different lifestyles.

Urbanization is not only about housing, roads and facilities; it is also about changes in lifestyles and culture. Of course, rural residents are gradually catching up with modern lifestyle. But they should also be encouraged to build some kind of "rural community" with their friends and relatives in special areas of cities to preserve their traditional culture.

WANG FENG, via e-mail

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