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Michael Brose

2015 WIHR Research Projects

Being Chinese and Muslim: The Intersection of Citizenship and Faith in Southwest China

Funded projects, February 2015

Researcher: Michael Brose

Department: History

This project studies the religious life of Chinese Muslim (Hui) communities in a cluster of towns in central Yunnan Province, seeking to understand how Hui communities there have reconciled their highly visible faith practice with their identities as good citizens. These are some of the oldest settlements in Yunnan, known for their intact imperial architecture and as sites of Hui anti-state rebellions. Those Hui communities are thriving today, with new religious and secular construction activities. Earlier research by applicant suggested the Yunnan Hui adapted two national initiatives enunciated by the Chinese State, “harmonious society” and better ties to the wider Islamic World, to emerge from the Mao era as respected and dynamic faith and citizen communities. This project extends that earlier research to assess recent developments in Yunnan Hui communities after a terrorist attack in the provincial capital labeled as “Islamic” by the state.


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