Ethnoregional disparity, ethnoterritoriality and peripheral nationalism: Socioracial dilemmas in contemporary China

Yeoh, Emile Kok Kheng (2010) Ethnoregional disparity, ethnoterritoriality and peripheral nationalism: Socioracial dilemmas in contemporary China. International Journal of China Studies, 1 (2). pp. 569-644. ISSN 2180-3250

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While Chinese economic reform in the recent decades has brought about stunning economic miracles, it also aggravated the problems of unemployment, poverty and inequality that continue to plague China in her politicosocioeconomic development into the new millennium, and with poverty having the properties of being concentrated in the western region and in the ethnic minority areas, ethnoregionalization of poverty inevitably ensues, presenting the country not only with economic challenges but also long-term sociopolitical uncertainties. Focusing on the involuted nexus between the challenges posed by central-peripheral conflicts, ethnoterritorial aspirations, income and wealth inequalities and interregional economic disparity exacerbated by the country's "retreat from equality" over the recent decades, the revival of old regionalisms, the creation of new regionalisms brought about by increased local autonomy, as well as the evolving role of the one-party State in the economy and society, this paper proceeds to ponder the pitfalls and prospects of further decentralization and contemplates the feasibility of the road beyond fiscal federalism. While the alleviation of the multi-faceted problem of poverty in China is inevitably linked to the country's regional and minority policies and hence may call for a stronger emphasis on the elements of decentralization and localization, the paper does caution that the same problem with its ethnoregional dimension may also add to decentralization the threat of centrifugal tendencies especially if decentralization leads to a politics of cutthroat competition instead of a decentralized politics of accommodation and the resultant provincial protectionism intensifies local particularism and precipitates secessionistic ethnogenesis or reethnicization.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ethnic diversity; Ethnoregionalism; Ethnoterritoriality; Intergroup relations; National question; Peripheral nationalism
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Depositing User: Zanaria Saupi Udin
Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2011 07:10
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2019 04:46

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