'Face' and psychological processes of laid-off workers in transitional China

Wang, Bingxin, and Greenwood, Kenneth Mark (2016) 'Face' and psychological processes of laid-off workers in transitional China. Family Medicine and Community Health, 4 (3). pp. 51-63.

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Objective: The objective was to explore the psychological experiences of laid-off workers in contemporary transitional China and to formulate a theoretical model of these.

Methods: In-depth interviews of 26 laid-off workers were conducted and analysed using grounded theory techniques.

Results: Four themes underline the psychological processes of these laid-off workers – feeling of loss, feeling of physical pain, feeling of fatalism, and final acceptance. These are characterized by Chinese culture and its philosophy – feeling of loss is dominated by their loss of face (diu mianzi), physical pain is a somatization of their mental painfulness, their fatalism is traced back to the Chinese ancient theocratic concept of Tian Ming, and their acceptance of reality to their final making face (zhen mianzi) is sourced from both Confucianism and Daoism.

Conclusion: The psychological experience of laid-off workers (or unemployed workers) is likely to have varied manifestations in different cultural contexts. The psychological processes of Chinese laid-off workers (or unemployed workers) might be different from those of laid-off workers in Western countries. A therapeutic intervention to cater for the needs of laid-off workers derived from the four themes might be effective.

Item ID: 43938
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2305-6983
Keywords: China; laid-off workers; unemployed workers; state-owned enterprises; psychological process
Date Deposited: 09 May 2016 23:44
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520104 Industrial and organisational psychology (incl. human factors) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences @ 100%
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