CfP: Negotiating Ethnic Belonging along the Sinophone Borderlands (2021-09-13) to (2021-09-14) (Deadline: 2021-03-08)


In the aftermath of the foundation of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), a careful tailor craftsmanship aimed at “stretching the short, tight, skin of the nation over the gigantic body of the empire” (Anderson 1983). A complex demographic mosaic, especially diverse in the borderlands of the new-born communist state, was part of this imperial heritage.

This online-workshop aims at bringing together the expertise of scholars whose work focuses on the ethnically and linguistically diverse people at the Sinophone borderlands, broadly conceived as both areas across international borders and “grey areas” within the PRC that do not comply to minzu isomorphism. We welcome ethnographic and historical perspectives of analysis but invite the participating scholars to keep their focus on the twentieth and twenty-first century.

We wish to address the formation, transformation, and resilience of ethnic identities as processes of mediation between the PRC’s imposition of the ethnic classification and the bottom-up assertions and rejections of ethnic belonging and the changes happened over time. Rather than seeing these dynamics as opposed to each other, we are interested in unpacking specific case-studies that show in what ways ethnicity is negotiated in the Sinophone borderlands.

The workshop will consist of 10 to 12 presentations by the participating researchers, followed by discussions. To ensure a fruitful discussion of all the papers at the workshop, we kindly ask all the participants to circulate their drafts two weeks before the workshop. We plan to publish the presented papers in a special/thematic issue of an academic journal indexed in Scopus/WoS following the conclusion of the workshop.

Interested scholars are encouraged to submit an abstract (max. 300 words) and a short biography
(max. 150 words) in English, until 8 March 2021.

Dr. Ute Wallenböck (Palacký University, Masaryk University) and Dr. Valentina Punzi
(University of Tartu)