National Imaginings And Ethnic Tourism In Lhasa, Tibet: Postcolonial Identities Amongst Contemporary

 National Imaginings and Ethnic Tourism in Lhasa, Tibet: Postcolonial Identities Amongst Contemporary PDF ePub fb2 book

ABSTRACT: This dissertation examines Tibetan ethnic identities in contemporary Lhasa through the lens of an ethnographic approach. Based on intensive fieldwork (2000─2002), it describes and analyses complex links between Tibetan national subjectivities and the capitalist economy endorsed by socialist ideology. The research questions posed address how Lhasa Tibetans negotiate with the imposition of...

Paperback: 200 pages
Publisher: Vajra Publications (December 1, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 9937506581
ISBN-13: 978-9937506588
Amazon Rank: 14473829
Format: PDF ePub fb2 djvu book

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values, while negating and retrieving their ethnic sentiments; what it is to live as an 'ethnic Tibetan' as crafted by the state discourse; and how they are (dis)enabled by the prevailing dichotomous value constellations, such as tradition/modernity, Buddhist/communist, backward/civilised, religious/economic, and past/future. In answering these questions, the research focuses on a group of Tibetan youth who acquired secondary education in China in order to become tour guides. They were selected through an official procedure, and expected to contribute to Lhasa's modernisation process as model tour guides. While elaborating on their active engagement within the tourist industry as 'ethnic agents', the dissertation also delineates the state discourses which propose to redefine and manipulate Tibetan culture and identity. A central aim of the thesis is the examination of the political nature of the tourist industry's development. Among studies of China's ethnic minorities this research offers a unique ethnographic contribution to comprehending the socio-political situation in modern Lhasa, rarely investigated due to political sensibilities. What has changed, or remains unchanged, in Tibetan identities since the state embracement of capitalism? How are those in Lhasa living within a totalitarian space wherein nationalism, socialism and capitalism have converged? The primary contention of this thesis is that they are not obedient, passive agents, but can cultivate their embeddedness in these powers in order to (re)create their ethnic identity as...