Women as Peasant Farmers: Commune, Huaxian County, Guangdong 1976

Selected for Google Maps and Google Earth

Comments (15)

Ian Stehbens on February 21, 2010

This was located near the centre of the rural Commune in 1975-76. The commune had 5 small dams in the hills to the north, from which irrigation water was reticulated to the padi and the vegetable growing fields. Today the area has been overwhelmed by the suburban spread of Guangzhou. The irrigation lakes and some of the holding basins which were doubled as fish ponds are still there, but the lakes now serve as the centre pieces of new residential suburbs. Most of the dozen or so villages that comprised the commune are still there though surrounded by new urban developments, and separated by new freeways that criss-cross the once arable land.

jeff_msn123 on February 22, 2010

Very precious old photo at these period of China.

Cheers, Jeff

Ian Stehbens on February 23, 2010

I am very pleased to be able to post some glimpses from this period, Jeff. Like the area of Three Gorges Dam photos, this is also a significant record as Guangzhou's growth overwhelms this rural area. Thanks for your encouragement.


Andrei Matusov on February 23, 2010


Ian Stehbens on February 24, 2010

Hello Клевый,

Thank you for your encouragement and visit. Stay cool!

Warmest regards,

Ian (in Australia)

Silvyp on February 24, 2010

What a beautiful old picture Ian, this photo have a good atmosphere. One of my best chinese friends lives very close this location.

Best Wishes

Ian Stehbens on February 25, 2010

Dear Silvy,

Thanks for the affirmation. It is a joy to resurrect a few of these images and to share them. There generally were few cameras in China at the time as a result of the cultural revolution so I hope this gives someone some joy. Is your friend in Guangzhou?


Silvyp on February 25, 2010

Hi Ian, yes, my friend is in Guangzhou with his family, this picture remind me him, because the family is farmer there too, to say the truth this photo seems the same place or very very close, the houses look the same. He is the unique of the family that work as buyer inspector in one big chinese company,he always comes in Brazil to inspect blocks of granite. He told me that the life there is not easy until today. They have a very different culture and life, you know, imagine, actually he have wife and one girl, the wife work too and the little girl lives with the granfather, they met her sometimes, for us it is not possible, of course, some people do it, but less of 5% I think.


Ian Stehbens on February 25, 2010

Thank you, Silvy for your lovely caring response. Anything is possible, though there are millions of people in Gaungzhou. But this commune was regarded as one of the leading communes so it is quite possible that your friend may have come from here and become successful in a Chinese company. However this architecture is very common across the region.

Your compassionate understanding is appreciated. My visits to China have given me some wonderful privileges to appreciate the people and their history.


Silvyp on February 25, 2010

Your welcome Ian :)

It is a joy can travel and appreciate the histories personally, since january of last year I am stopped at the same place, how I miss my travels!!! but..duty calls!


Ian Stehbens on February 25, 2010

In the meantime, Silvy, sit back, put your feet up, relax and watch the water flowing by or the flowing mane of the horses galloping by. Then one day duty will call you away! Travelling is wonderful, indeed


Andrey Bogdanov on March 5, 2010

Hi, Jan, yours collection of China photos in 1970-1980th is simply stunning. It was a real pleasure to look it through. Cheers from Russia, Andrey.

Ian Stehbens on March 5, 2010

Thank you, Andrey, for your appreciative visit to my gallery, especially to see the images of China.

Best regards,


brunosma (NO VIEWS) on March 8, 2010

Beautiful rocky release that brings the local traditions hi brown

Ian Stehbens on March 8, 2010

Hello Brown,

I have often thought of this image as one that summarises the rural landscape of South China well: the women farm workers, the old buildings comprising a cosy village, the intensive agriculture, and the evidence of summer hurricanes.

Thanks for your appreciation.


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Photo details

  • Uploaded on February 21, 2010
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Ian Stehbens