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Han, Enze (2013) Contestation and Adaptation: The Politics of National Identity in China. New York: Oxford University Press.

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This book aims to unravel the complexities of national-identity contestation and adaptation among various ethnic minority groups in China. The book focuses on the interactions between domestic and international forces that inform ethnic groups’ national-identity contestation, positing a theoretical framework where international factors play a significant role in determining whether ethnic groups contest the national identities imposed on them. It argues that whether ethnic groups contest those national identities depends on their perceiving a better, achievable alternative. In particular, it argues that for ethnic groups that have extensive external ethnic kin relations, the comparative well-being between the group and its ethnic kin can create the perception of such an alternative. If an ethnic group perceives a capacity to achieve a better alternative, then it is more likely to politically mobilize to contest its national identity. If no such achievable alternative is present, an ethnic group is more likely to cope with its situation through emigration, political ambivalence, or assimilation. Through such theoretical framework, the book compares five major ethnic minority groups in China and how they negotiate their national identities with the Chinese nation-state: Uyghurs, Chinese Koreans, Dai, Mongols, and Tibetans. By studying these five ethnic minority groups in China and their diverse pattern of response to China's nation-building processes, this book aims to shed light on the nation-building processes in China during the past six decades and how groups have resisted or acquiesced in their dealings with the Chinese state and majority Han Chinese society.

Item Type: Authored Books
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Politics & International Studies
Legacy Departments > Faculty of Law and Social Sciences > Department of Politics and International Studies
ISBN: 9780199936298
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 14 Sep 2012 08:30

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