By Russell Harwood
In response to ethnographic fieldwork, this situation research examines the effect of financial improvement on ethnic minority humans residing alongside the upper-middle reaches of the Nu (Salween) River in Yunnan. during this hugely mountainous, moderately populated quarter dwell the Lisu, Nu, and Dulong (Drung) humans, who until eventually lately lived as subsistence farmers, hoping on moving cultivation, looking, the gathering of medicinal crops from surrounding forests, and small-scale logging to maintain their loved ones economies. China's New Socialist Countryside explores how obligatory schooling, conservation courses, migration for paintings, and the growth of social and monetary infrastructure aren't in basic terms reworking livelihoods, but additionally intensifying the chinese language Party-state’s skill to combine ethnic minorities into its political textile and the nationwide business financial system.
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Additional info for China’s New Socialist Countryside: Modernity Arrives in the Nu River Valley
I was able to overcome this challenge by employing a local research assistant and translator. 10 During most of my interviews, Liu translated from the local language. The Imperative of Modernity and Development In contemporary China, modernity and development not only are implicated in creating and improving material infrastructure such as highways, urban skyscrapers, and mass communication networks, but also are connected with molding human subjects who are useful to the ongoing development and strengthening of the national economy.
Gongshan’s ethnic minorities are subject to a particularly demeaning official and popular discourse that represents them as “backward” (luohou) and of low quality, with their subsistence lifestyles and harsh living conditions representing the antithesis of the development model prescribed by the Chinese Party-state. Governing authorities at all levels call the challenges to development in Nujiang’s four counties the “Nujiang issue” (Nujiang wenti). According to this narrative, Nujiang’s weak environmental carrying capacity, combined with isolation and a “poor,” “low-quality” ethnic minority population, is hindering the development of the Nujiang economy.
Critically, while many aspects of the economic development agenda pursued by the CCP since 1978 reflect a neoliberal rather than a Marxist ideology, other aspects of this agenda are decidedly nonliberal (see Kipnis 2007), with the Party continuing to represent itself as the only agent capable of providing the social and economic conditions that will enable the Chinese population to improve themselves and achieve higher levels of material and spiritual development. With this in mind, it is not surprising to find that a development narrative dominates official and popular spheres in China.