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Tibet and Nationalist China's Frontier: Intrigues and Ethnopolitics, 1928-49
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About the author
China's policies towards Tibet and other ethnic border territories during the political reign of Chiang Kai-shek and the Nationalists are often understood as a deliberate exercise of power. In this groundbreaking study, Hsiao-ting Lin demonstrates that the frontier was the subject neither of concerted aggression on the part of a centralized and indoctrinated Chinese government, nor of an ideologically driven nationalist ethnopolitics.
Lin utilizes recently declassified Chinese official documents to reveal how the Nationalist sovereignty over Tibet and other border regions was more the result of rhetorical grandstanding on the part of Chiang Kai-shek and his nationalist regime than a definite plan to exert control over the region. He reveals that it was not until the Sino-Japanese war (1937-45) that the besieged wartime Nationalists took the opportunity to push Han Chinese authority farther west. Whether a matter of state building or regime survival, this development pressed postwar China's territorial extension of its previously imaginary state control into Central Asia, the consequences of which still reverberate in the region.
Tibet and Nationalist China's Frontier makes a crucial contribution to the understanding of past and present China-Tibet relations. A counterpoint to erroneous historical assumptions, this book will change the way Tibetologists and modern Chinese historians frame future studies of the region.
Hsiao-ting Lin is a Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University.
List of Illustrations
Acronyms and Abbreviations
Part One: The Setting
1. The Nationalist Government, National Image, and Territorial Fragmentation in the Prewar Decade (1928-1937)
2. The Professed Policy, the Policy Planners, and the Imagined Sovereignty
Part Two: The Prewar Decade, 1928-1937
3. The Unquiet Southwestern Borderlands
4. The Mission to Tibet
5. The 'Commissioner' Politics
Part Three: The Wartime Period, 1938-1945
6. Building a Nationalist-controlled State in Southwest China
7. The Issue of China-India Roadway via Tibet
8. Rhetoric and Reality in Wartime China's Tibetan Concerns
Part Four: The Postwar Period, 1945-1949
9. Postwar Frontier Planning vis-a-vis non-Han Separatist Movements
10. The Sera Monastery Incident
Glossary of Names and Terms
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