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  • Speaker | 21 August, 2017 (18:00)Book now

    The Political Economy of Han Xinjiang: Organised Dependency and Lucrative Chaos

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    Date(s) - 21/08/2017
    6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


    Embassy of Australia


    Dong Zhi Men Wai Da Jie, No. 21, Beijing, China


    (010) 5140-4111



    Entrance Fee

    FCCC Members free, non-members 100RMB

    Social control is the main preoccupation of the Chinese authorities in Xinjiang argues the economic anthropologist, Tom Cliff. Both rhetoric and military force have intensified in 2017. The rolling “strike hard” campaigns of the 2000s have given way to a permanent war footing. What is life like for ordinary Han settlers in Xinjiang—people just trying to “get along”? How does it differ from the rest of China? And what do their lives tell us about the political economies of Xinjiang, and its fraught relationship with the cultural and political core of China?

    These questions are key to understanding the mechanisms of unrest and social control in contemporary Xinjiang. Based on more than three years of field research in Xinjiang, Tom Cliff will argue that ordinary Han are central political actors in this ongoing tragedy and that economic and civilian relationships are just as important as guns and military power in effecting social control in Xinjiang.

    Cliff will address the FCCC and take questions on these issues, offering an in-depth and historically-grounded viewpoint on contemporary Xinjiang.


    Tom Cliff is an economic anthropologist based at the Australian National University. He is the author of Oil and Water: Being Han in Xinjiang, which was published by Chicago University Press in June 2016. He has a PhD in Asian Studies and is currently investigating informal finance, social stability management, and welfare structures in non-metropolitan China. Cliff spent over three years living in and exploring Xinjiang since he first passed through in 1995. 27 months of that time was specifically dedicated to research for his book, during which time he lived and worked for the elite Tarim Oilfield Company, based in Korla, South Xinjiang. His 2015–2016 publications on Xinjiang include a book chapter with Columbia University Press and an article in The China

    DATE: Aug 21 (Monday) 6-7:30pm
    VENUE: Embassy of Australia, 21 Dongzhimenwai Dajie
    ENTRANCE: FCCC Members free, non-members: 100 RMB. With passports and prior registration only.


    Bookings are closed for this event.