Chinese Post80s Generational Resilience: Chengyu (成语) as Communicative Resources for Adaptation and Change
resilience, chengyu, career, Chinese Post80s, organizational communication
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
The combined forces of China’s reforms, resurgent traditional values, and problematic labor market have led the Chinese Post80s generation to reconstruct their careers. Drawing on 33 in-depth interviews, this study examines how Post80s professionals communicatively constitute resilience as they utilize and transform meanings of chengyu (成语, Chinese four-word idiom encapsulating shared values). Guided by chengyu, Post80s construct resilience processes from temporal (past-present-future), relational (self-other-collective), and introspective perspectives (passion-practice). As discursive cultural resources of resilience, chengyu legitimize choices, frame actions, inspire ways of managing change and expectations, and offer comfort in difficult times. This study expands resilience research to a non-Western context and highlights how cultural and generational discourses can mobilize agency in the constitution of resilience. Findings offer practical implications in promoting and cultivating resilience.
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Citation / Publisher Attribution
International Journal of Business Communication, v. 58, issue 3, p. 410-429
Scholar Commons Citation
Long, Ziyu; Buzzanell, Patrice M.; and Kuang, Kai, "Chinese Post80s Generational Resilience: Chengyu (成语) as Communicative Resources for Adaptation and Change" (2018). Communication Faculty Publications. 1004.