The Interactions of Ethnic Minorities in Beijing

University of Oxford Centre on Migration, Policy and Society Working Paper 14-111: 1-26

27 Pages Posted: 2 Sep 2013 Last revised: 16 Jan 2014

Reza Hasmath

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science

Date Written: 2014

Abstract

Drawing on six years of fieldwork in Beijing, this article looks at the daily interactions of ethnic minorities in local neighbourhoods and places of economic activities. Moreover, it examines ethnic minorities’ negotiations with public institutions, the Han majority and other ethnic minority groups. The article suggests that celebratory ethno-festivals and ethnic oriented restaurants that showcase minority traditions serve as a mechanism to encourage Han interactions with ethnic minority groups. However, the attendant risk in utilizing this practice is that the socio-economic struggles of many ethnic minority groups are being masked when a celebratory version of their culture and traditions are presented. This can potentially lead to reduce meaningful Han-ethnic minority interactions in the future.

Keywords: China, Beijing, ethnic minorities, interactions, representation, commodification

Suggested Citation

Hasmath, Reza, The Interactions of Ethnic Minorities in Beijing (2014). University of Oxford Centre on Migration, Policy and Society Working Paper 14-111: 1-26. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2319032 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2319032

Reza Hasmath (Contact Author)

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science ( email )

10-16 Henry Marshall Tory Building
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2H4
Canada

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