The classification of ethnic identities (minzu) remains controversial in China. Categories established in the 1950s are still used by the state to administer minority areas, despite the existence of a complicated web of subjective identities which potentially undermines efforts to use these categories effectively.
This book offers a new, and sometimes unusual, perspective on ethnic relations in China, and on the interactions between China and other cultures. Two major themes run through the book: the classification of ethnic minorities in China by the state, and the implications of this practice; and the way in which China and the Chinese are seen by outsiders as well as insiders. The contributors, whose research is all based on fieldwork with the relevant communities, are from a wide range of backgrounds and are currently based in China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Kazakhstan, and Germany. The subjects of their research are the politics of minority classification in the People’s Republic of China; questions of identity in Xinjiang; Kazakhstani perceptions of China and the Chinese; Chinese Muslims in Malaysia; and the growing Chinese diaspora in Africa. This book was originally published as a special issue of Ethnic and Racial Studies.
Table of Contents
Majorities and minorities in China: an introduction Michael Dillon
1. Representation of ethnic minorities in socialist China Ke Fan
2. More Islamic, no less Chinese: explorations into overseas Chinese Muslim identities in Malaysia Chow Bing Ngeow and Hailong Ma
3. Kazakh perspective on China, the Chinese, and Chinese migration Aziz Burkhanov and Yu-Wen Chen
4. The discourse of racialization of labour and Chinese enterprises in Africa Barry Sautman and Yan Hairong
5. Socioeconomic attainment, cultural tastes, and ethnic identity: class subjectivities among Uyghurs in Ürümchi Xiaowei Zang
6. Blurring boundaries and negotiating subjectivities – the Uyghurized Han of southern Xinjiang, China Agnieszka Joniak-Lüthi
Michael Dillon is an independent China scholar specialising in the history, politics and society of China. He was the founding Director of the Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies at the University of Durham, UK; is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and the Royal Asiatic Society; and is a member of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House).