Chinese nationalism | Wikipedia audio article

Chinese nationalism | Wikipedia audio article


Chinese nationalism is the form of nationalism
in China which asserts that the Chinese people are a nation and promotes the cultural and
national unity of the Chinese.==Ideological basis====
National consciousness==There have been versions of a Chinese state
for around 4,000 years. The Chinese concept of the world was largely
a division between the civilized world and the barbarian world and there was little concept
of the belief that Chinese interests were served by a powerful Chinese state. Commenter Lucian Pye has argued that the modern
“nation state” is fundamentally different from a traditional empire, and argues that
dynamics of the current People’s Republic of China (PRC) – a concentration of power
at a central point of authority – share an essential similarity with the Ming and
Qing Empires.==Ethnicity==Defining the relationship between ethnicity
and the Chinese identity has been a very complex issue throughout Chinese history. In the 17th century, with the help of Ming
Chinese rebels, the Manchus invaded the Chinese heartland and set up the Qing dynasty. Over the next centuries they would incorporate
groups such as the Tibetans, the Mongols, and the Uyghurs into territories which they
controlled. The Manchus were faced with the issue of maintaining
loyalty among the people they ruled while at the same time maintaining a distinctive
identity. The main method by which they accomplished
control of the Chinese heartland was by portraying themselves as enlightened Confucian sages
part of whose goal was to preserve and advance Chinese civilization. Over the course of centuries the Manchus were
gradually assimilated into the Chinese culture and eventually many Manchus identified themselves
as a people of China. The complexity of the relationship between
ethnicity and the Chinese identity can be seen during the Taiping rebellion in which
the rebels fought fiercely against the Manchus on the ground that they were barbarian foreigners
while at the same time others fought just as fiercely on behalf of the Manchus on the
grounds that they were the preservers of traditional Chinese values. It was during this time that the concept of
Han Chinese came into existence as a means of describing the majority Chinese ethnicity. In the late 19th century, Chinese nationalism
identified Han with Chinese and argued for the overthrow of the Manchus who were considered
outside the realm of the Chinese nation. This led to many rebellions by Han Chinese. Sun Yat-sen once declared: “In order to restore
our national independence, we must first restore the Chinese nation. In order to restore the Chinese nation, we
must drive the barbarian Manchus back to the Changbai Mountains. In order to get rid of the barbarians, we
must first overthrow the present tyrannical, dictatorial, ugly, and corrupt Qing government. Fellow countrymen, a revolution is the only
means to overthrow the Qing government!”After the 1911 Revolution, the official definition
of “Chinese” was expanded to include non-Han ethnicities as part of a comprehensive Chinese
nation (Zhonghua Minzu), in order to boost the unification of different races in China. The official Chinese nationalistic view in
the 1920s and 1930s was heavily influenced by modernism and social Darwinism, and included
advocacy of the cultural assimilation of ethnic groups in the western and central provinces
into the “culturally advanced” Han state, to become in name as well as in fact members
of the Chinese nation. Furthermore, it was also influenced by the
fate of multi-ethnic states such as Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire. It also became a very powerful force during
the Japanese occupation of Coastal China during the 1930s and 1940s and the atrocities committed
then. During the 1960s and 1970s, Chinese nationalism
within mainland China became mixed with the rhetoric of Marxism, and nationalistic rhetoric
become in large part subsumed into internationalist rhetoric. On the other hand, Chinese nationalism in
Taiwan was primarily about preserving the ideals and lineage of Sun Yat-sen, the party
he founded, the Kuomintang (KMT), and anti-Communism. While the definition of Chinese nationalism
differed in the Republic of China (ROC) and PRC, both were adamant in claiming Chinese
territories such as Senkaku (Diaoyutai) Islands. In the 1990s, rising economic standards, the
fall of the Soviet Union, and the lack of any other legitimizing ideology has led to
what most observers see as a resurgence of nationalism within China.==Chinese Muslims==
Chinese Muslims have played an important role in Chinese nationalism. Chinese Muslims, known as Hui people, are
a mixture of the descendants of foreign Muslims like Arabs and Persians, mixed with Han Chinese
who converted to Islam. Chinese Muslims are sinophones, speaking Chinese
and practicing Confucianism. Hu Songshan, a Muslim Imam from Ningxia, was
a Chinese nationalist and preached Chinese nationalism and unity of all Chinese people,
and also against imperialism and foreign threats. He even ordered the Chinese Flag to be saluted
during prayer, and that all Imams in Ningxia preach Chinese nationalism. Hu Songshan led the Ikhwan, the Chinese Muslim
Brotherhood, which became a Chinese nationalist, patriotic organization, stressing education
and independence of the individual. Hu Songhan also wrote a prayer in Arabic and
Chinese, praying for Allah to support the Chinese Kuomintang government and defeat Japan. Hu Songshan also cited a Hadith (圣训),
a saying of the prophet Muhammad, which says “Loving the Motherland is equivalent to loving
the Faith” (“爱护祖国是属于信仰的一部份”). Hu Songshan harshly criticized those who were
non patriotic and those who taught anti nationalist thinking, saying that they were fake Muslims. Ma Qixi was a Muslim reformer, leader of the
Xidaotang, and he taught that Islam could only be understood by using Chinese culture
such as Confucianism. He read classic Chinese texts and even took
his cue from Laozi when he decided to go on Hajj to Mecca. Ma Fuxiang, a Chinese Muslim general and Kuomintang
member, was another Chinese nationalist. Ma Fuxiang preached unity of all Chinese people,
and even non-Chinese people such as Tibetans and Mongols to stay in China. He proclaimed that Mongolia and Tibet were
part of the Republic of China, and not independent countries. Ma Fuxiang was loyal to the Chinese government,
and crushed Muslim rebels when ordered to. Ma Fuxiang believed that modern education
would help Hui Chinese build a better society and help China resist foreign imperialism
and help build the nation. He was praised for his “guojia yizhi”(national
consciousness) by non Muslims. Ma Fuxiang also published many books, and
wrote on Confucianism and Islam, having studied both the Quran and the Spring and Autumn Annals. Ma Fuxiang had served under the Chinese Muslim
general Dong Fuxiang, and fought against the foreigners during the Boxer Rebellion. The Muslim unit he served in was noted for
being anti foreign, being involved in shooting a Westerner and a Japanese to death before
the Boxer Rebellion broke out. It was reported that the Muslim troops were
going to wipe out the foreigners to return a golden age for China, and the Muslims repeatedly
attacked foreign churches, railways, and legations, before hostilities even started. The Muslim troops were armed with modern repeater
rifles and artillery, and reportedly enthusiastic about going on the offensive and killing foreigners. Ma Fuxiang led an ambush against the foreigners
at Langfang and inflicted many casualties, using a train to escape. Dong Fuxiang was a xenophobe and hated foreigners,
wanting to drive them out of China. Various Muslim organizations in China like
China Islamic Association (Zhongguo Huijiao Gonghui) and the Chinese Muslim Association
were sponsored by the Kuomintang. Chinese Muslim imams had synthesized Islam
and Confucianism in the Han Kitab. They asserted that there was no contradiction
between Confucianism and Islam, and no contradiction between being a Chinese national and a Muslim. Chinese Muslim students returning from study
abroad, from places such as Al Azhar in Egypt learned about nationalism and advocated Chinese
nationalism at home. One Imam, Wang Jingzhai, who studied at Mecca,
translated a Hadith, or saying of Muhammad, “Aiguo Aijiao”- loving the country is equivalent
to loving the faith. Chinese Muslims believed that their “Watan”(country
in Arabic) was the whole of the Republic of China, non-Muslims included.General Bai Chongxi,
the warlord of Guangxi, and a member of the Kuomintang, presented himself as the protector
of Islam in China and harbored Muslim intellectuals fleeing from the Japanese invasion in Guangxi,
who preached Chinese nationalism and anti imperialism. Chinese Muslims were sent to Saudi Arabia
and Egypt to denounce the Japanese. Translations from Egyptian writings and the
Quran were used to support propaganda in favor of a Jihad against Japan.In Xinjiang, the
Chinese Muslim general Ma Hushan supported Chinese nationalism. He was chief of the 36th Division (National
Revolutionary Army). He spread anti Soviet, and anti Japanese propaganda,
and instituted a colonial regime over the Uighurs. Uighur street names and signs were changed
to Chinese, and the Chinese Muslim troops imported Chinese cooks and baths, rather than
using Uighur ones. The Chinese Muslims even forced the Uighur
carpet industry at Khotan to change its design to Chinese versions.The Tungans (Chinese Muslims,
Hui people) had anti Japanese sentiment.General Ma Hushan’s brother Ma Zhongying denounced
separatism in a speech at Idgah Mosque and told the Uighurs to be loyal to the Chinese
government at Nanjing. The 36th division had crushed the Turkish
Islamic Republic of East Turkestan, and the Chinese Muslim general Ma Zhancang beheaded
the Uighur emirs Abdullah Bughra and Nur Ahmad Jan Bughra. Ma Zhancang abolished the Islamic Sharia law
which was set up by the Uighurs, and set up military rule instead, retaining the former
Chinese officials and keeping them in power. The Uighurs had been promoting Islamism in
their separatist government, but Ma Hushan eliminated religion from politics. Islam was barely mentioned or used in politics
or life except as a vague spiritual focus for unified opposition against the Soviet
Union.Ma Hushan proclaimed his loyalty to Nanjing, denounced Sheng Shicai as a Soviet
puppet, and fought against Soviet invasion in 1937.==Republic of China (ROC)==One common goal of current Chinese nationalists
is the unification of mainland China and Taiwan. While this was the common stated goal of both
the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of China (ROC) before 1991, both sides differed
sharply on the form of unification.==Overseas Chinese==
Chinese nationalism has had mutable relationships with Chinese living outside of Mainland China
and Taiwan. Overseas Chinese were strong supporters of
the Xinhai Revolution. After decolonization, overseas Chinese were
encouraged to regard themselves as citizens of their adopted nations rather than as part
of the Chinese nationality. As a result, ethnic Chinese in Thailand, Singapore,
and Malaysia have sharply divided the concept of ethnic Chinese from the concept of “political
Chinese” and have explicitly rejected being part of the Chinese nationality. During the 1960s, the People’s Republic of
China and Republic of China (ROC) maintained different attitudes toward overseas Chinese. In the eyes of the PRC government, overseas
Chinese were considered capitalist agents; in addition, the PRC government also thought
that maintaining good relations with southeast Asian governments was more important than
maintaining the support of overseas Chinese. By contrast, the ROC desired good relations
with overseas Chinese as part of an overall strategy to avoid diplomatic isolation and
maintain its claim to be the sole legitimate government of China. With the reforms under Deng Xiaoping, the
PRC’s attitude toward overseas Chinese became much more favorable, and overseas Chinese
were seen as a source of capital and expertise. In the 1990s, the PRC’s efforts toward overseas
Chinese became mostly focused on maintaining the loyalty of “newly departed overseas Chinese”,
which consisted of mostly graduate students having emigrated, mostly to the United States. Now, there are summer camps, in which overseas
Chinese youths may attend to learn first-hand about Chinese culture. In 2013, “100 overseas Chinese youth embarked
on their root-seeking journey in Hunan.” Textbooks for Chinese schools are distributed
by the government of the People’s Republic of China.==Opposition==
In addition to the Taiwan independence movement, there are a number of ideologies which exist
in opposition to Chinese nationalism. Some opponents have asserted that Chinese
nationalism is inherently backward and is therefore incompatible with a modern state. Some claim that Chinese nationalism is actually
a manifestation of beliefs in Han Chinese ethnic superiority (also known as Sinocentrism),
though this is hotly debated. While opponents have argued that reactionary
nationalism is evidence of Chinese insecurity or immaturity and that it is both unnecessary
and embarrassing to a powerful nation, Chinese nationalists assert that Chinese nationalism
was in many ways a result of Western imperialism and is fundamental to the founding of a modern
Chinese state that is free from foreign domination.==Northern and Southern==Edward Friedman has argued that there is a
northern governmental, political, bureaucratic Chinese nationalism that is at odds with a
southern, commercial Chinese nationalism. This division is rejected by most Chinese
and many non-Chinese scholars, who believe that Friedman has overstated the differences
between the north and the south, and point out that the divisions within Chinese society
do not fall neatly into “north-south” divisions. For example, Dr. Sun Yat Sen, leader of the
Chinese Nationalist Party, known as the father of modern China, was a southern Chinese with
Cantonese-Hakka ancestry. He advocated pan-Han Chinese nationalism against
the ruling Manchu-led Qing dynasty and was influential in the overthrow of the Qing dynasty. He is widely revered in both mainland China
and Taiwan regardless of northern or southern orientation.==Populism==
During the 1990s, Chinese intellectuals have vigorously debated the political meaning and
significance of the rising nationalism in China. From their debates has emerged a multifarious
populist nationalism which argues that anti-imperialist nationalism in China has provided a valuable
public space for popular participation outside the country’s political institutions and that
nationalist sentiments under the postcolonial condition represent a democratic form of civic
activity. Advocates of this theory promote nationalism
as an ideal of populist politics and as an embodiment of the democratic legitimacy that
resides in the will of the people. Populist nationalism is a comparatively late
development in Chinese nationalism of the 1990s. It began to take recognizable shape after
1996, as a joint result of the evolving nationalist thinking of the early 1990s and the ongoing
debates on modernity, postmodernism, postcolonialism, and their political implications-debates that
have engaged many Chinese intellectuals since early 1995.==Modern times==
The end of the Cold War has seen the revival throughout the world of nationalist sentiments
and aspirations. However, nationalist sentiment is not the
sole province of the CPC. One truly remarkable phenomenon in the post-Cold
War upsurge of Chinese nationalism is that Chinese intellectuals became one of the driving
forces. Many well-educated people-social scientists,
humanities scholars, writers and other professionals-have given voice to and even become articulators
for rising nationalistic discourse in the 1990s. Some commentators have proposed that “positive
nationalism” could be an important unifying factor for the country as it has been for
other countries.As an indication of the popular and intellectual origins of recent Chinese
nationalist sentiment, all coauthors of China Can Say No, the first in a string of defiant
rebuttals to American imperialism, are college educated, and most are self-employed (a freelancer,
a fruit-stand owner, a poet, and journalists working in the partly market-driven field
of Chinese newspapers, periodicals, and television stations). Chinese nationalism targets against two major
groups : Japan, which invaded China in 1931–1945, and Secessionism like Tibetan independence,
Xinjiang independence, Taiwanese independence and their supporters like USA, India and Turkey. In the 21st century, notable spurs of grassroots
Chinese nationalism grew from what the Chinese saw as marginalization of their country from
Japan and the Western world. The Japanese history textbook controversies,
as well as Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi’s visits to the Yasukuni Shrine was the source
of considerable anger on Chinese blogs. In addition, the protests following the 2008
Tibetan unrest of the Olympic torch has gathered strong opposition within the Chinese community
inside China and abroad. Almost every Tibetan protest on the Olympic
torch route was met with a considerable pro-China protest. Because the 2008 Summer Olympics were a major
source of national pride, anti-Olympics sentiments are often seen as anti-Chinese sentiments
inside China. Moreover, the Sichuan earthquake in 2008 sparked
a high sense of nationalism from Chinese at home and abroad. The central government’s quick response to
the disaster was instrumental in galvanizing general support from the population amidst
harsh criticism directed towards China’s handling of the Lhasa riots only two months previous.===Internet vigilantism===
Since the state controlled media has control over most media outlet, the Internet is one
of the rare places where Chinese nationalists can rant and express their feelings. While the government is known for shutting
down controversial blogs, it is impossible to completely censor the Internet and all
websites that may be deemed controversial. Chinese Internet users frequently write nationalistic
topics online on websites such as Tianya.cn. Some web-based media such as a webcomic named
Year Hare Affair also features nationalistic ideas. The nationalists look for news of people whom
they considered to be traitors to China, such as the incident with Grace Wang from Duke
University, a Chinese girl who allegedly tried to appease to both sides during the debate
about Tibet before the 2008 Summer Olympics. She was labeled as a traitor by online Internet
vigilantes, and even had her home back in Qingdao, China, attacked. Her parents had to hide for a while before
the commotion died down. In response to protests during the 2008 Olympic
Torch Relay and accusations of bias from the western media, Chinese blogs, forums and websites
became filled with nationalistic material, while flash counter-protests were generated
through electronic means, such as the use of SMS and IM. One such site, Anti-CNN, claimed that news
channels such as CNN and BBC only reported selectively, and only provided a one-sided
argument regarding the 2008 Tibetan unrest. Chinese hackers have claimed to have attacked
the CNN website numerous times, through the use of DDoS attacks.==See also==
Adoption of Chinese literary culture Boxer Rebellion
Chinese Century Chinese imperialism
Chinese unification De-Sinicization
Fenqing Han chauvinism
Hui pan-nationalism List of tributaries of China
Manchurian nationalism Pax Sinica
Sinicization Sinocentrism
Sinophile Zhonghua minzu

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