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Seminar on Ethnic Politics in China

Seminar on Ethnic Politics in China

Martin Lavicka09 Feb 2015Leave a comment

Ethnic Politics in China

Course leader: Julie Yu-Wen Chen, Ph.D. (Nazarbayev University, Kazakhstan)

Dates: May 4-6, 2015


May 4 (Monday): 8:00-11:15

May 5 (Tuesday): 8:00-11:15

May 6 (Wednesday): 8:00-11:15

Venue: room 2.07, Department of Asian Studies, Palacký University Olomouc, Křížkovského 14, Olomouc, Czech Republic

Dr. Julie Yu-Wen Chen works as an Associate Professor at the Graduate School of Public Policy at Nazarbayev University in Kazakhstan. Her research focuses on Contemporary Chinese politics and societies, International Relations, Ethnic politics and Technology and society. Professor Chen is also the executive editor of the journal Asian Ethnicity, published by Taylor & Francis.

Required reading materials can be downloaded in zip here.

This module contains two major components. The first component “Ethnicity and Identities in China,” begins with an introduction of social science theories about race, ethnicity, and nationhood. This is followed by an examination of the formation of various identities, such as ethnic and political identities in China, using the analytic framework of social science theories. Among the topics to be discussed are how the Chinese nation was constructed, how “the Others” were conceived, the development of ethnicity in China’s frontier regions, and how the globalization process (including transnational migration) and the blooming cyberspace challenge and reshape existing identities.

The second component focuses on how these different identities influence contemporary Chinese politics domestically and internationally. The trajectory of the politicization and internationalization of China’s ethnic issues will be examined. We will explore how this has affected China’s foreign relations. In addition, policy debates among elites and leaders in and outside of China will be evaluated to predict the outlook for China’s handling of ethnic issues. Lastly, students will have the opportunity to read about the experiences and intellectual journeys of a number of scholars to understand how the academic sub-discipline of ethnicity in China has developed.

It is worth noting that this module will have a comparative and international feature, as students will be presented for comparison various cases regarding ethnic mobilization, ethnic conflicts, ethnic policies, and the manifestation of nationalism around the world. This module will also be interdisciplinary: students will be encouraged to use various theories and methods in the social sciences in their comparative analyses.

Component 1: Ethnicity and Identities in China

  • Introduction (45 mins)
  • Social and Historical Construction of Identities & Boundaries (45 mins)
  • The Discourse of Race in Modern China (45 mins)
  • Ethnicity at the Frontier (45 mins)

Component 2: Ethnic Politics in Contemporary China

  • Origins of Ethnic Conflicts  (45 mins)
  • Internationalization of Ethnic Conflicts (45 mins)
  • The Legitimacy of Ethnic Mobilization (45 mins)
  • Ethnic Issues in China’s Foreign Relations (45 mins)
  • Ethnic Issues in US-China Relations (45 mins)
  • Policy Reforms (45 mins)

Team Presentations:

  • Ethnicities in Sinophone Cyberspace (2X 45 mins)

Students of Palacký University Olomouc can receive 4 credits after meeting the course requirements. You can sign up for this course in the University system under the code ASH/MZX. For any information regarding this course, please contact Mr. Martin Lavička

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