The question of people's livelihood has become an important subject faced by China and all countries in the world that cannot be avoided. From ancient times, the plain idea of people's livelihood started to grow in China. Before and after every major historical reform in history, people's livelihood was inevitably one of the important issues to be considered by many ideologists and statesmen. In the new century, the Chinese Government further raised the guarantee and improvement of people's livelihood to the height of national development strategy, which further shows the importance of the issue of people's livelihood.
The Theory of People's Livelihood by Li Xiaoning has made objective analysis and description of the ideas and practices concerning the people's livelihood in China and other countries in different historical periods from ancient times, focusing on the topic of people's livelihood and by citing historical materials, and aiming at the modern idea of people's livelihood of “schooling, working for income, medical service, old-age care and housing”.
The book consists of eight chapters, respectively presenting the people's livelihood ideas and practices in the historical periods of ancient China, the old democratic revolution, the new democratic revolution, early period after the founding of New China and the period of reform and opening up, as well as the people's livelihood ideas and practices in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan regions and in main countries of the world.