Remote Homeland, Recovered Borderland: Manchus, Manchoukuo, and Manchuria, 1907-1985, by Shao Dan, addresses a long-ignored issue in the existing studies of community construction: How does the past failure of an ethnic people to maintain sovereignty over their homeland influence their contemporary reconfigurations of ethnic and national identities? To answer this question, Shao focuses on the Manzus, the second largest non-Han group in contemporary China, whose cultural and historical ancestors, the Manchus, ruled China from 1644 to 1912. Based on deep and rigorous empirical research, Shao analyzes the major forces responsible for the transformation of Manchu identity from the ruling group of the Qing empire to the minority of minorities in China today: the de-territorialization and provincialization of Manchuria in the late Qing, the remaking of national borders and ethnic boundaries during the Sino-Japanese contestation over Manchuria, and the power of the state to re-categorize borderland populations and ascribe ethnic identity in post-Qing republican states.
“This is a valuable study of a little known and important subject. Theauthor analyzes the changes in ethnic identity of the peoples ofManchuria during the early twentieth century, focusing on the way thatexternal interventions and political changes reconfigured classifications of this territory and its inhabitants. Using abundantprimary source materials and judicious reference to leading theorists ofnationalism and ethnicity, the author makes an important contributionto studies of ethnicity, imperialism, national identity, and stateformation in Modern China.” —Rana Mitter, Institute for Chinese Studies,University of Oxford
The World of East Asia
August 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3445-6 / $55.00 (CLOTH)