Chapter

The Qing and Islam on the Western Frontier

James A. Millward and Laura J. Newby

in Empire at the Margins

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 2006 | ISBN: 9780520230156
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520927537 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520230156.003.0005
The Qing and Islam on the Western Frontier

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This chapter delineates some of the main forces influencing ethnic definition in Xinjiang. In particular, it focuses on two liminal groups: the Turkic Muslim officials, or begs, who served in the Qing government, and the Tungans (Hanhui), or Sino-Muslims, who migrated to Xinjiang from the northwestern provinces of the Chinese heartland. The chapter aims demonstrate the tensions between Islam and the Qing imperial system. At the same time, it argues that from the mid-eighteenth to the mid-nineteenth century, although concerned with questions of identity and loyalty, the Qing imperial state did not promote Chinese cultural or political forms for their own sake, or attempt to assimilate Xinjiang inhabitants to the ways of China.

Keywords: Xinjiang; Sino-Muslims; Turkic Muslim officials; Qing government; Tungans; Islam; Qing imperial system

Chapter.  10495 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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