December 12th, 2010
Chinese sociologists have come up with a new term for educated young people who move in search of work like Ms. Liu: the ant tribe. It is a reference to their immense numbers — at least 100,000 in Beijing alone — and to the fact that they often settle into crowded neighborhoods, toiling for wages that would give even low-paid factory workers pause.
Follow up:This Chinese story sounds very much like what is going on in the U.S. The American age group hit the hardest by unemployment is the under 24 population, which includes many recent college graduates. In China, however, there is still high demand for blue collar workers and wages are rising there. The U.S. has quite the opposite situation, with blue collar unemployment much higher than for the college educated across all age groups. Read the entire NYT article.....