In some regions, such as North America, Australia and, which were only sparse populated by hunting and gathering communities, Europeans became the majority population. In other areas, including much of Asia, Africa and South America, the local populations remained in the majority. 1 Societies of the first of these forms, including the Britain, have become industrialized. Those in the second types are mainly at a much lower state of industrial development and are always classified as less developed societies, or the developing world such as China.
This essay will discuss the similarities and differences between Chinese and British societies in the role of cultures, norms, values and inequality in social organization. For UK, it is based on industrial production and generally free enterprise. Majority of people live in towns and cities, just a few work in rural agricultural area. For China, majority of the population work in agriculture, and mostly using the traditional methods. Some agriculture products are sold on world markets.
The most difference between Chinese and British economic system Chinese economic system is centrally planned. Culture, which is an integrated pattern of human belief, knowledge, and behavior influences every society. The culture of British has been influenced by many factors including: the nation’s island status; its history as a western liberal democracy and a major power; Result of the British Empire, British affect can be seen in the languages, legal systems and culture of many of it’s former colonies; such as United States, Australia. China also has a long history and used to be a one of the most powerful countries ruled the world.
Since ancient times, Chinese culture has been greatly influenced by Confucianism and a kind of hidebound philosophies. Nowadays, the culture of the People’s Republic of China is a rich and varied mixture of traditional Chinese culture and other international modern and post-modern influences. Different culture forms different rules specifying what behaviors are acceptable in a society or group,that is social norms. Chinese society norms is distinguished by clarify rituals of politeness, demonstrations of friendship. Ironically, the Chinese society emphasis that the individual should have a internalized personality.
This does not mean introverted. The ritual formulas prevent the necessity of real interpersonal connection. Face behavior is a typical case, which is highly formalized interpersonal behavior belonging to stiffly stratified groups. The network constitution (Guan Xi), literally, “connections”. Similar with face behavior, guan-xi relationships are smaller group relationships. Like face behavior, it is duty between individuals in order to keeping group integrity. In the Chinese view of social relationships the concept of compatibility is very important, in another way, keeping things smooth.
Therefore, it is very difficult for the Chinese to come right out with a “no” answer. The Chinese do not like do business with strangers, because they cannot interact with people they do not know. 4 Generally, Chinese are more vertical, embedded, they are preference on family and the blood relationship. Their connection behavior are indirect and more rely on personal reputation. Comparing with Chinese, British are more direct and impersonal, they tend to show fairness. British society is universalist, which means British cares more about universal application or applicability.
They value the idea of fair play and more individualism which means the social outlook that stresses the individual worth, in other words, more autonomous. Result from the different cultures, the values between Chinese and British are quite different. For British, “the most commonly chosen values were respect for the law (57%) and tolerance and politeness towards others (56%). Other commonly cited values were equality of opportunity (38%), freedom of speech or expression (36%) and that everyone should speak English (36%). ”
In politics area, Britain is not perfectly democratic even in the late 1990s. People in Britain are still described as “subjects” of the monarch as opposed to being ‘citizens’, and(in 1999) non-elected hereditary peers in the house of lords could block legislation which had been voted through within the House of Commons. ” 6Unlike China, the power of British different social establishment are not officially specified in a written constitution which means that the powers of government of Britain are extremely far-reaching, since they are not limited by a written constitution that might protect individual rights.
The similarity between China and British politics is that people generally obey the state, not because state directives are particularly popular or just or even sensible,but because they are the law. The most significant power of the British and Chinese government is the almost unlimited ability to make and to enforce laws. Another major power is the governments are easy to raise very large sums of money, especially the Chinese government that it can also contribute the whole nation into one thing. 8 The inequality of society exist in every countries no matter Britain or China.
The salary for different jobs are unequal is an uneven allocation of income across the population. Some people are very wealth while others are very poor. These inequalities happens from the actions of labor markets and the unequal distribution of wealth-property. 9 A report by the Office for National Statistics includes evidence of the increase of social inequality in Britain over the last few decades. In the 1970s, the incomes of the richest 10 percent were three times higher than the poorest 10 percent.
A significant rise in income inequality was witnessed in the 1980s and 1990s, as wealth was redistributed away from working class to the rich. By the end of the 1990s, income inequality was four times greater. In 1996, over half of total wealth was owned by only 10 percent of the population, while the top 50 percent population owned a unbelievable 93 percent of total fortune. 10 Britain having recently become more unequal and the unequal problem in China seems much more serious.
Khan and Riskin found that the Chinese urban Gini coefficient had increased to a value 0. 24 in 1988 to 0. 31 in 2002, while the rural Gini was rose up from 0. 33 in 1988 to 0. 38 in 2002. 11 The poor often make demands for rectification against the rich. The ‘breadwinner’ and the increase participation in women’s labour force, the national enterprise negotiation structures and the decrease of trade union’s influence, and changes in the taxation and benefit are main factors that have influenced the rapid growth of income inequality in Britain(Chills 1996).
China has the similar situation but more problems,the most typical example is the inequality between government’s officers and the normal citizens, because China is a kind of centralization country that the government has almost unlimited power, so it is easy for the government’s officers get extremely benefit from the government’s finance such as corruption.
At the same time, their political power could help them escape from the law punishment and keep them stay in the higher level of society than normal citizens. In conclusion, Chinese society and British society have plenty of similarities because of the globalization. However, the long-term cultural heritage make the both society also have a lot of difference.