China Off Center: Mapping the Margins of the Middle Kingdom

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Susan Debra Blum, Lionel M. Jensen
University of Hawaii Press, 2002 - Social Science - 402 pages
China Off Center takes as its fundamental assumption that contemporary China can only be understood as a complex, decentralized place, where the view from above (Beijing) and from tourist buses is a skewed one. Instead of generalizing about China, it demonstrates that this diverse national terrain is better conceived as it is experienced by Chinese, as a set of many Chinas. To that end, this anthology of interpretive essays and ethnographic reports focuses on the everyday, the particular, the local, and the puzzling. Together with contextualizing introductions, the readings provide students with a compelling look at some little-known but significant aspects of China from the past decade; for those already familiar with China, they furnish an assortment of uncommon viewpoints in a single, convenient volume.
 

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Contents

THE CENTER AND THE NONCENTER
21
Rivaling Unitary Nationalism
31
4
45
5
71
Ethnoreligious Resurgence in a Northwestern Sufi Community
106
Southwest and the Diaspora
127
8
148
9
167
13
249
Economic Margins
271
Rock and Roll
289
Spiritual Life
309
17
323
Afterword
341
Notes
347
Bibliography
365

South and Southeast
183
Sexuality
219
12
234
Contributors
387
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