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  Chinese Way>Life

Deep in the Hutongs - Part2: Migrant workers (video)

2013-10-11 10:33:25



High-rise buildings and shopping malls are littered throughout Beijing. But smaller, less visible buildings in the alleys of this modern metropolis are an indispensable part of the city: the hutongs.

The gray-tiled old houses and alleys give a wonderful glimpse into traditional Beijing lifestyle and culture. People play, chat, eat and relax together in the hutongs, painting the picture of a lifestyle that is much different from life in the city’s high-rise apartments.

The four parts of this series aim to explore the hutongs in depth and meet all of the different kinds of people living there.

Age and inconvenience – among other factors – have pushed many local Beijingers out of their hutong residences. People are moving from other parts of China to open shops, salons, grocery stores and other small business that are easily accessible to the community. Mr. Ma has been in Beijing for several years and spends his summers selling steamed cold noodles in the hutongs. He is tired, he said, but is making every effort to support his children and wife who are at home in Henan. In our second installation, we follow Mr. Ma to experience his life as a migrant working in the capital city.

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Deep in the Hutongs Part I: The old Beijingers  Macao and Beijing on the sly  Youth Crosstalk Festival and Competition held in Beijing