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Syllabus for the SUN 2004 course

Rewriting History: Emerging Identities and Nationalism in Central Asia

go to session(s) no. [1] [2] [3] [4-6] [HB Paksoy's lectures for downloading] [7-9] [10-11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20-21] [writing ]

 

Week 1-2

Session 1

Teachers' Name

Colin Mackerras

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Topic

Nationalism and History

Teaching Mode

Seminar and discussion

Summary

The session maps the scope of problems related to the relationship between Nationalism and a History writing process. It provides the theoretical basis for the phenomenon of rewriting and revising History in Central Asia, especially after the collapse of the Soviet Union. It will consider several different major theories of nations and nationalism, including those of Ernest Gellner, E.J. Hobsbawm, Anthony Smith and others. What precisely do the terms "nation" and "nationalism" mean and what do they imply? When and in which conditions did the term "nation" come into use? Is a "nation" as old as history of human societies? Is nationalism a positive or negative force in the writing of history? The session gives some attention to Benedict Anderson's notion of nations as "imagined communities" and the role of historiography in construction of national identities.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Elie Kedourie, Nationalism, Hutchinson University library, London, 1960, second revised edition 1961, pp. 74-9.

James G. Kellas, The Politics of Nationalism and Ethnicity, Second Edition, St. Martin's Press, New York, 1998, pp. 1-9, 43-64.

Anthony D. Smith, Nations and Nationalism in a Global Era, Polity Press, Cambridge, 1995, 58-67.

Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities, Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism, Verso, London and New York, 1983, revised edition 1991, pp. 37-46.

On the Internet:

The Nationalism Project website is http://www.nationalismproject.org/index.htm. It includes a good many links, some of which will be useful.

"What is Nationalism?", The Nationalism Project http://www.nationalismproject.org/what.htm

Ernest Gellner Defining "nation", The Nationalism Project, http://www.nationalismproject.org/what.htm

Benedict Anderson, "The Nation as Imagined Community", The Nationalism Project, http://www.nationalismproject.org/what/anderson.htm

Eric Hobsbawm Nations and Nationalism since 1780, The Nationalism Project, http://www.nationalismproject.org/what.htm

Michael Hechter, "Types of Nationalism", The Nationalism Project, http://www.nationalismproject.org/what.htm

Anthony D. Smith's opening statement: "Nations and their pasts", The Warwick Debates, http://members.tripod.com/GellnerPage/Warwick.html

Ernest Gellner's reply, The Warwick Debates, http://members.tripod.com/GellnerPage/Warwick2.html

Writing Assignments

During the course

Begin drafting your research proposal. Check the office hours of those faculty members you want to consult with in its preparation.

 

Session 2

Teachers' Name

Colin Mackerras

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Topic

State, Politics and the writing of History in China 

Teaching Mode

Lecture and discussion

Summary

The session will trace how history-writing has developed in China. It will consider the nature of the relationship of the state and politics to history-writing in imperial China, giving attention to the late imperial period. It will move on to consider how "modernity", the May Fourth Movement (1919) and the impact of the West affected the writing of history in China, especially the changing role of nationalism and how the state tried to influence this, but failed to prevent the rise of leftist historical theories. The discussion of the early twentieth century will include Prasenjit Duara's theory of "rescuing history from the nation", which critiques the nation as the subject of history.

The session will give considerable space to the People's Republic, analyzing how history writing has been greatly affected by state policy and ideology. It will show differences among the periods when Mao Zedong was in control, mentioning the Cultural Revolution, and give some attention also to the changes in the relationship between the writers of history, the state and politics during the reform period since 1978.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Arif Dirlik, Revolution and History, The Origins of Marxist Historiography in China, 1919-1937, University of California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London, 1978, pp. 259-68.

Prasenjit Duara, Rescuing History from the Nation, Questioning Narratives of Modern China, University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 1995, pp. 3-16, 229-36.

 

Session 3

Teachers' Name

Colin Mackerras

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Topic

History, Identity and Nationalism in Chinese Central Asia

Teaching Mode

Lecture

Summary

The session will take up the concepts of cultural autonomy and the relationship between identity and history writing in Chinese Central Asia, especially Xinjiang and Tibet. It will interrogate the concept of 'Chinese Central Asia', raising questions over precisely what it implies. It also examines the concept of identity and implications and discusses the rights of minority cultures, especially as discussed by Will Kymlicka.

The session next turns to consider the boundaries of China, how they have shifted and what that might mean for understanding the history of China. It raises the question of what is China, giving specific attention to Mongolia, Xinjiang and Tibet. It considers the histories of several particular ethnic groups in terms of identity and nationalism. Finally, it takes up two case studies in the study of history, identity and nationalism: ancient archaeological finds in Xinjiang and the Uygur state lasting from 744 to 840.

Reading Assignments

Colin Mackerras, 'Introduction', in Colin Mackerras, ed., Ethnicity in Asia, Routledge Curzon, London and New York, 2003, chapter 1, pp. 1-15.

Colin Mackerras, 'What Is China? Who Is Chinese? Han-Minorities Relations, Legitimacy, and the State', in Peter Hays Gries and Stanley Rosen, eds, State and Society in 21st Century China: Crisis, Contention, and Legitimation, Routledge Curzon, London and New York, 2004, Ch.11.

On the Internet:

Erkin Alptekin, "The Uighurs", http://www.taklamakan.org/history/uighur_update_1.html

 

Sessions 4-6

Teachers' Name

H. B. Paksoy

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Topic

Identities: How Governed, Who Pays? 

Teaching Mode

Lecture, discussion

new download lectures (.rtf) [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]

Summary

Is there a set of universal principles governing identity? Most identities in existence today have successfully transformed themselves from their origins by means of organization, necessity and diligence. This adaptation or new formation is the result of conscious choices and methods created, borrowed, or adapted for the purpose. Not all identities traveled through the same journey to reach their positions. The seminar focuses on such aspects of Identities as official Identity, leavening of identity, identity of Governance, interaction of identities, corporate identities, identity of belief system, mosaic identity, technological and future identities, and secret identities. These problems are looked at in the context of new emerging identities in Central Asia.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

On the Internet:

H. B. Paxoy, Identities: How Governed, Who Pays?  Princeton, 2001 http://www.ukans.edu/carrie/texts/carrie_books/paksoy-7/

 

Sessions 7-9

Teachers' Name

Dru C. Gladney

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Topic

Islam and Ethnicity in China: Making Majorities and Minorities

Teaching Mode

Lecture, discussion

Summary

Taking China as the main country of focus, this course will survey the minority peoples who live primarily on its border areas and interact with neighboring Inner Asian countries as well as the Han Chinese majority.  Though China is generally thought to be a culturally homogeneous society, the contribution of minorities to the construction of Chinese society and identity will be explored, illustrating the importance of diversity and multi-culturalism to a well-rounded understanding of Chinese culture and society.

There has been a growing use of national symbols as indicators of loyalty and of ethnic paradigms as a guide to behavior and the shaping of institutions.  While minority peoples are generally relegated to the margins of study in surveys of contemporary civilizations, this course will seek to demonstrate the central role they have played, and continue to exert, in the construction of the Chinese and Inner Asian nation-states.  This course suggests that many aspects of contemporary societies can only be fully understood from an interdisciplinary study of the ethnic peoples who inhabit these modern states, viewed transregionally, comparatively, and in historical depth. 

Reading Assignments

Before the course

On the Internet:

Dru C Gladney, 'Alterity Motives', In Pl Nyri, editor. China Inside Out, 2003, On-line journal http://cio.ceu.hu

Dru C Gladney, 'Internal Colonialism and China's Uyghur Muslim Minority', International Institute for the Study of Islam in the Modern, World Newsletter, 1998, October, No 1: 20- 28

http://isim.leidenuniv.nl/newsletter/1/regional/01AC23.html

Dorian, James P., Brett Wigdortz, and Dru C. Gladney. "China and Central Asia: A Volatile Mix?", Asia Pacific Issues, No. 31, May 1997, pp. 1-24.

http://www.eastwestcenter.org/res-rp-publicationdetails.asp?pub_ID=30&SearchString=Gladney

Dru C. Gladney, 'Relational Alterity: Constructing Dungan (Hui), Uygur, and Kazakh Identities across China, Central Asia, and Turkey', History and Anthropology, Vol. 9, No. 2, 1996: 445-77. http://www.hawaii.edu/dru/tree.htm

 

Sessions 10-11

Teachers' Name

Touraj Atabaki

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Topic

Ethno-nationalism and territorial nationalism in Central Asia

Teaching Mode

Lecture, discussions

Summary

The complex interplay between ethno-nationalism, which is a direct outcome of the peculiar type of Soviet ethno-federalist administration, and territorial nationalism, which is refashioned to introduce a sense of territorial attachment for all citizens of the new states, including the non-indigenous and non-titular ethnic groups.

Dichotomy between the new states, identified by new citizens, and the titular ethnic groups in the context of the processes of transition of these countries, which are contested by local ethno-religious conflicts. History and justification of territorial claims.

Reading Assignments

Before the Course

'Russification and Sovietisation of Central Asia', In: Encyclopedia of modern Asia, Levinson, David and Karen Christensen, et al., Eds. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons: 2002

Touraj Atabaki & Sanjyot Mehendale, 'Trans-nationalism and Diaspora in Central Asia and the Caucasus', Routledge Curzon Press, London & New York, 2004, (Forthcoming).

Bert G. Fragner, 'Soviet nationalism': An Ideological Legacy to the Independent Republics of Central Asia', in: E.J. Zurcher and W. van Schendel (eds), Identity Politics in Central Asia and Muslim World, London, I.B. Tauris, 2001, pp. 13-33. 

Geoffrey Wheeler, The Modern History of Soviet Central Asia London, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1964, pp. 31-47. 

 

Sessions 12

Teachers' Name

Touraj Atabaki

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Topic

State building in Central Asia: invention of historical traditions and reinterpretation of history

Teaching Mode

Lecture, seminar, discussion

Summary

This seminar studies the formation of a series of national and territorial identities in Central Asia following the demise of the Soviet Union. It outlines the process if state building, where a collective identity often is formulated and disseminated in order to foster the collective memoirs amongst the citizens of the new states. It also examines the practice of collective imagination, the reconstruction and reinterpretation of history, the invention of necessary historical traditions, which intend to justify and give coherence to the emerging modern state by bringing groups of peoples together and strengthening or even forming their common sense of identity and political solidarity.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Douglas Northrop, Veiled Empire, Gender and Politics in Stalinist Central Asia Ithaca and London, Cornell University, 2004, pp. 69-101.

Touraj Atabaki, 'Beyond Essentialism. Who writes whose Past in the Middle East and Central Asia?', Amsterdam, Aksant, 2003. 

Nick Megoran, 'Theorizing gender, ethnicity and the nation-state in Central Asia', Central Asia Survey, Vol. 18, No, 1, 1999, pp. 99-110.

A.Sarsembayev, '"Imagined Communities: Kazak nationalism and Kazakification in the 1990s', Central Asia Survey, Vol. 18, No, 3, 1999, pp. 319-346. 

Anthony Hyman, 'Turkestan and Pan-Turkism revisited', Central Asia Survey,Vol. 16, No, 3, 1997, pp. 339-351. 

Shahram Akbarzadeh, 'The Political shape of Central Asia', Central Asia Survey, Vol. 16, No, 4, 1997, pp. 517-542. 

Shahram Akbarzadeh, 'Nation-building in Uzbekistan', Central Asia Survey, Vol. 15, No, 1, 1996, Pp. 23-32.  

 

Session 13

Teachers' Name

Ablet Kamalov

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Topic

Uyghur Studies in the Soviet Union: Stateless nation and International Relations

Teaching Mode

Lecture, film screening, discussion

Summary

The seminar examines how international relations affect the rise of Nationalism of peoples inhabiting neighboring countries. The rise of Uyghur Nationalism in both Soviet and Chinese Central Asia was a result of the natural process of the forming of modern nations in Central Asia, but also was influenced by the Soviet policy towards Xinjiang. Soviet-Chinese relations shaped Uyghur Nationalism on both sides of state borders. Historical studies on Uyghurs how the History of a stateless Nation is constructed in different states, but the interests of those states cannot keep the Uyghurs from constructing their own view on their history. Demonstration of the film on the Uyghur Community in Central Asia and Uyghur-transnationalism.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

J. Jon Ruselson, 'Uighur Historiography and Uighur Ethnic Nationalism', in: Ethnicity, Minorities and Cultural Encounters. Ed. by I. Svanberg, Uppsala;Uppsala Univeristy Press, 1991, pp. 64-82.

 

Session 14

Teachers' Name

Ablet Kamalov

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Topic

Tarim mummies and Uyghur nationalism: continuity between ancient and modern peoples

Teaching Mode

Lecture, film screening, discussion

Summary

The seminar also discusses the role of ancient cultures and civilizations in shaping modern national identities and nationalism on the example of 'Tarim Mummies' of East Turkistan/Xinjiang. It will discuss how the images of the past are used in 'individualization' of a nation and for justification of political rights of peoples to their territories.

How is it important to demonstrate continuity between the ancient inhabitants and modern nationalities? The role of Archeology and Cultural Anthropology in construction of national identity. Film-screening: Riddle Desert Mummies

Reading Assignments

Before the course

J. Jon Ruselson, 'The Xinjiang Mummies and Foreign Angels: Art, Archaeology and Uyghur Muslim Nationalism in Chinese Central Asia', Toronto Studies in Central and Inner Asia, 2 (1996), pp.

The Taklamakan Mummies:

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/chinamum/taklamakan.html

 

Session 15

Teachers' Name

Ablet Kamalov

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Topic

Contested Histories of the Uyghurs: the Chinese and Uyghur perspectives

Teaching Mode

Lecture, discussion

Summary

The Seminar is devoted to the role of the State in constructing historical concepts of minorities on the example of differences between official version of the Uyghur History in China and Uyghur Nationalist interpretation of the Uyghur history. The Chinese Nationalist ideas and chauvinist concepts on History of China and exclusiveness of the Han civilization produced formation of alternative views on history representing the local Nationalist feelings of the non-Han peoples. The Seminar will trace the roots of Uyghur Nationalism and determine the role of Historiography and Literature, especially historical novels, in shaping Uyghur nationalism and aspirations to independence from China.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

L. Benson, 'Contested History: Issues in the Historiography of Inner Asia's Uighurs', in Toronto Studies in Central and Inner Asia, 2 (1996), pp. 87-113.

G. Bovington, Nabijan Tursun, 'Contested Histories', in: Xinjiang. China's Muslim borderlands. Ed. S. Fredderick Starr, Armonk, New York, London, 2004, pp. 353-374.

 

Session 16

Teachers' Name

Agnes Birtalan

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Topic

From 'Secret History' to Mongol National Historiography

Teaching Mode

The session examines the evolution of the Mongolian Historiography and growth of Mongol Nationalism. The example of the native Mongolian Historiography is the 'Secret History' of the Mongols, but after Buddhist conversion the Mongolian chronicles (starting from the 17th century) became influenced by the Indo-Tibetan narratives, which particularly transformed the original empire ideology. This combination of Buddhist and original nomadic native historiography presented the ideological basis even for the Theocratic Mongolian State at the beginning of the 20th century and traces of it can be found in the ideology and historiography of socialist Mongolia.

Summary

Lecture, seminar, discussion

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Ayuudai Ochir, 'A Brief History of Mongolian Historical Research 1921-1996', in: Facets of Transformation of the Northeast Asian Countries II. Ed. by Hiroki Oka. Center for Northeast Asian Studies, Tohoku University 1999. pp. 191-215. 

 

Session 17

Teachers' Name

Agnes Birtalan

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Topic

The trends of the formation of an Inner-Asian Empire. The example of the Great Mongolian Empire

Teaching Mode

The 13th century history of the Mongols became the ideological example for the following centuries in the vast territories of the North-Eurasia. Main historical trends of the formation of nomadic empires will be reviewed. Various sources on the Mongol History will be described.

Summary

Lecture

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Tsogt-Ochir Ishdorj, 'The Mongolain Reconception of Chinggis Khan', in: Facets of Transformation of the Northeast Asian Countries II. Ed. by Hiroki Oka. Center for Northeast Asian Studies, Tohoku University 1999. pp. 217-228

 

Session 18

Teachers' Name

Agnes Birtalan

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Topic

Revisiting the history during the time of socialism and after the political changes

Teaching Mode

The 20th century historical view changed several times and the principles of pan mongolism and Nationalism used the Chingisid ideology, while depending on the ideology of the neighboring countries (USSR, China) even the national history became interpreted as a "shame" for the Mongols. However after the political changes this situation changed and as it is usual it went somehow from one extreme to the other.

Summary

Lecture, discussion

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Bulag, Uradyn E., 'The Creation of Ethnicity and Nationalism in Twentieth-Century Mongolia', in: Nationalism and Hibridity in Mongolia. Clarendon Pres Oxford 1998. pp. 215- 258. 

 

Session 19

Teachers' Name

Anuar Galiev

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Topic

Who gets the past? Soviet Historical and Ethnological theories and construction of Central Asian History

Teaching Mode

Lecture

Summary

The seminar will look at the historical theories worked out by the Soviet scholarship in reconstructing the history Central Asian peoples. The core conception here was a theory of ethnogenesis, or origin of modern peoples based on the Stalin's definition of a Nation. Each titular nationality's history was conceptualized and outlined in the Official versions of the Republic's Histories, which were created by a special Commission with a Party Secretary on Ideology at the head. Among the Soviet historical theories also are those of Bromley and Gumilev. Eurasianism as an attempt to create a Slavic and Turkic union.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

V. A. Shnirelman, Who Gets the Past? Competition for Ancestors among Non-Russian Intellectuals in Russia. Washington: The Woodrow Wilson Center Press, Baltimore and London: The John Hopkins University Press, 1996, pp. 1-21, 50-61.

Uyama Tomohiko, 'Two Attempts at Building a Qazaq State: The Revolt of 1916 and the Alash Movement', in: Islam in politics in Russia and Central Asia (early 18th to late 19th centuries). Ed. by S. A. Dudoingnon and K. Hisao, Kegan Paul: London, New York, Bahrain, 2001, pp. 77-98.

 

Sessions 20-21

Teachers' Name

Anuar Galiev

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Topic

Mythologization of History in Central Asia

Teaching Mode

Lecture, discussion

Summary

This seminar discusses why and how the History of the Turkic peoples of Central Asia is being mythologizied. How the Soviet politics and ideology conduced to creation of ethnic and national historical myths? Russian/ Soviet concepts on Nations and theory of 'ethnogenesis' and construction of local histories in Central Asia. The modern theory of V. Shnirelman on the role of mythologized History in politics and that of M. Gulogbo on 'de'-infantilization of ethnicity' and the role of leaders and 'ethnic mobilizators' in this process. The problems to be discussed here also include: the elements of mythologization (glorification of 'Golden ages', creation of genealogical myths of the state-founders' origin, creation of national heroes, making ethnic/national histories ancient); the role of historical myths in legitimization and sacralization of power in new independent states.

Reading Assignments

Before the course

Obiya Chika, 'When Faizulla Khodjaev Decided to Be an Uzbek', in: Islam in politics in Russia and Central Asia (early 18th to late 19th centuries). Ed. by S. A. Dudoingnon and K. Hisao, Kegan Paul: London, New York, Bahrain, 2001, pp.99-118.

Anuar Galiev, 'Mithologisation of the History of the Turkic peoples at the beginning if the third millennium, Acta Etnografica Hungarica, 47(3-4), 2002, pp.383-395.

 

Participants' presentations

Writing Assignments

top

During the course

Submit your 2- 5-page research proposals containing description of topics and concrete research questions, place in existing research, methodology, and expect outcome. Present your main points in ten minutes strictly and be prepared to answer questions.

[download this syllabus (.doc)] [detailed  course description]

 

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