If You Don’t Know How, Just Learn: Chinese Housing and the Transformation of Uyghur Domestic Space

Tim Grose, “If You Don’t Know How, Just Learn: Chinese Housing and the Transformation of Uyghur Domestic Space,” Ethnic and Racial Studies, 6 July 2020.

Summary

Tim Grose discusses measures the CCP has taken to eliminate the Uyghur identity in Xinjiang.

Abstract

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is eliminating and replacing (Wolfe, Patrick. 2006. “Settler Colonialism and the Elimination of the Native.” Journal of Genocide Research 8 (4): 387-409) indigenous expressions of Uyghurness. The Party-state has narrowed the official spaces in which Uyghur language can be used and tightened restrictions on religious practice while it has broadened the criminal category of “extremist.” These policies attempt to hollow-out a Uyghur identity that is animated by Islamic and Central Asian norms and fill it with practices common to Han people. The CCP has thrust these tactics into private homes. Drawing on research in the region between 2010 and 2017, government documents, and colonial theory, this article introduces and interrogates the “Three News” housing campaign. It argues that by imposing what I call “authoritarian reflectiveness,” the CCP intends to uproot Uyghur configurations of order and replace them with Han domestic sensibilities.

Keywords:  Assimilation Policy, Central Asia, Housing, Islam, Uyghur, Xinjiang