Sc2218 lecture 9 (2011)

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Lecture 9: Race, Ethnicity, Nation and ot

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  • Hirschman, Charles (1987) “The Meaning and Measurement of Ethnicity in Malaysia: An Analysis of Census Classifications” The Journal of Asian Studies 46(3):555-582.
  • Hirschman, Charles (1987) “The Meaning and Measurement of Ethnicity in Malaysia: An Analysis of Census Classifications” The Journal of Asian Studies 46(3):555-582.
  • Geertz, Clifford (1973) The Interpretation of Cultures . Esp. Ch. 10 “The Integrative Revolution: Primordial Sentiments and Civil Politics in the New States”
  • Barth, Fredrik (1969) Ethnic Groups and Boundaries . Cohen, Anthony (1985) The Symbolic Construction of Community . Earhart, H. Byron (1982) Japanese Religion: Unity and Diversity . (on Shinto)
  • Anderson, Benedict (1991) Imagined Communities (2 nd Edition). Esp. Ch. 10 “Census, Map, Museum.”
  • Thongchai Winichakul (1994) Siam Mapped .
  • Thongchai Winichakul (1994) Siam Mapped .
  • Sc2218 lecture 9 (2011)

    1. 1. SC2218: Anthropology and the Human Condition Lecture 9: Ethnicity, Nation, and Other Imagined Communities Eric C. Thompson Semester 1, 2011/2012
    2. 2. Where Are We Going? <ul><li>Part 1: What is Anthropology? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strangers Abroad, Race, Culture </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Part 2: What do Anthropologists Study? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kinship </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Economy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Community </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Part 3: Current Debates and Trends </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Representing Others, The Poetry of Culture, World Anthropologies </li></ul></ul>YOU ARE HERE
    3. 3. Lecture Outline <ul><li>What is are “Communities”? </li></ul><ul><li>Race, Ethnicity, Nation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Types of Communities </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Census, Map, Museum </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Technologies of Communities </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Beyond Census, Map, Museum… </li></ul>
    4. 4. Anthropology and Communities <ul><li>Early modern Anthropology (19 th to mid-20 th century) took “community” for granted. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Anthropologists studied small groups, villages </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Community and shared culture were taken-for-granted </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Now, anthropologists take “community” as a topic of research. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How are “communities” formed and imagined? What counts as a “community”? </li></ul></ul>
    5. 5. Community : Dictionary Definitions <ul><li>People with common interests , living in a particular area . </li></ul><ul><li>A group of people with common characteristics living together within a larger society. </li></ul><ul><li>A body of persons having a common history or common social , economic and political interests. </li></ul><ul><li>A body of persons of common interests scattered through a larger society . </li></ul>
    6. 6. Community: Co-location, Commonality <ul><li>Co-location (people living in one area) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Although “community” is still often used in this sense; this is increasingly seen as irrelevant. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social and cultural processes not bound by co-location (esp. with tele communication). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>People standing at a bus-stop are not a “community” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Commonality </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How is this determined? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(Will come back to this) </li></ul></ul>
    7. 7. Comparing Communities and Networks <ul><li>Social Networks and Communities are distinct sociological and cultural things. </li></ul><ul><li>A Social Network is defined by exchange and relationship between persons. </li></ul><ul><li>Exchange takes place on the basis of difference not similarity (though can create relationship and a sense of ‘commonality’) </li></ul><ul><li>A network is not necessarily a “community”. </li></ul>
    8. 8. Unbounded Communities <ul><li>A community of academics, scholars </li></ul><ul><li>NUSS = the NUS alumni community </li></ul><ul><li>The “Malay community” (or any other “ethnic community”) </li></ul><ul><li>A national community (do you cease to be Singaporean if you take a trip to Australia?) </li></ul><ul><li>The “YouTube” community. </li></ul><ul><li>Communities are based in senses of belonging and identity. </li></ul>
    9. 9. “ Imagined Communities” <ul><li>Markers of commonality are arbitrary ; they are socially and culturally agreed upon. </li></ul><ul><li>Communities exist because people imagine them to exist. (They are fundamentally cultural – shared belief, ideas, feelings). </li></ul><ul><li>Communities are not “fictional”… They are social and cultural realities – produced by human imagination. </li></ul>
    10. 10. Culture is… <ul><li>A system of shared meanings. “Webs of Significance” </li></ul><ul><li>A system for signaling and reproducing those shared meanings. </li></ul><ul><li>How is community culturally produced? </li></ul><ul><li>How do we signal and represent commonality among a group of people? </li></ul>
    11. 11. Census <ul><li>Singapore Census 1871 to 2000 </li></ul><ul><li>Shifting categories, shifting relationships between categories. </li></ul><ul><li>What happens to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>European? African? Chinese? Malay? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eurasian? Bugis? Hindoo? Tamil? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In each census, how would you categorize yourself? </li></ul>
    12. 12. Census Categories: Straits Settlements 1871 <ul><li>Europeans and Americans </li></ul><ul><li>(18 subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>Armenians </li></ul><ul><li>Jews </li></ul><ul><li>Eurasians </li></ul><ul><li>Abyssinians </li></ul><ul><li>Achinese </li></ul><ul><li>Africans </li></ul><ul><li>Andamanese </li></ul><ul><li>Arabs </li></ul><ul><li>Bengalees & other Natives of India </li></ul><ul><li>Boyanese </li></ul><ul><li>Bugis </li></ul><ul><li>Burmese </li></ul><ul><li>Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>Cochin-Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>Dyaks </li></ul><ul><li>Hindoos </li></ul><ul><li>Japanese </li></ul><ul><li>Javanese </li></ul><ul><li>Jaweepekans </li></ul><ul><li>Malays </li></ul><ul><li>Manilamen </li></ul><ul><li>Mantras </li></ul><ul><li>Parsees </li></ul><ul><li>Persians </li></ul><ul><li>Siamese </li></ul><ul><li>Singhalese </li></ul>
    13. 13. Census Categories: Straits Settlements 1901 <ul><li>I. Europeans and Americans (23 subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>II. Eurasians </li></ul><ul><li>III. Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>Cantonese </li></ul><ul><li>Hokkien </li></ul><ul><li>Kheh </li></ul><ul><li>Straits-born </li></ul><ul><li>Teo-Chew </li></ul><ul><li>Tribe Not Stated </li></ul><ul><li>(2 other categories) </li></ul><ul><li>IV. Malays & Other Natives of the Archipelago </li></ul><ul><li>Aborigines </li></ul><ul><li>Achinese </li></ul><ul><li>Bugis </li></ul><ul><li>Javanese </li></ul><ul><li>Malays </li></ul><ul><li>(4 other subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>V. Tamils & Other Natives of India </li></ul><ul><li>Bengalis </li></ul><ul><li>Burmese </li></ul><ul><li>Parsees </li></ul><ul><li>Tamils </li></ul><ul><li>VI. Other Nationalities </li></ul><ul><li>Africans </li></ul><ul><li>Annamese </li></ul><ul><li>Arabs </li></ul><ul><li>Armenians </li></ul><ul><li>Japanese </li></ul><ul><li>Jews </li></ul><ul><li>Persians </li></ul><ul><li>Siamese </li></ul><ul><li>Sinhalese </li></ul><ul><li>Not Stated </li></ul>
    14. 14. Census Categories: British Malaya 1921 <ul><li>The European Pop. by Race </li></ul><ul><li>(20 subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>Eurasians </li></ul><ul><li>The Malay Pop. by Race </li></ul><ul><li>Malays </li></ul><ul><li>Javanese </li></ul><ul><li>Boyanese </li></ul><ul><li>Bugis </li></ul><ul><li>Achinese </li></ul><ul><li>Sakai </li></ul><ul><li>(5 other subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>The Chinese Pop. by Tribe </li></ul><ul><li>Hokkien </li></ul><ul><li>Cantonese </li></ul><ul><li>Tie Chiu </li></ul><ul><li>Kheh </li></ul><ul><li>Northern Provinces </li></ul><ul><li>(6 other subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>The Indian Pop. by Race </li></ul><ul><li>Tamil </li></ul><ul><li>Telugu </li></ul><ul><li>Bengali </li></ul><ul><li>Hindustani </li></ul><ul><li>Burmese </li></ul><ul><li>Gurkha </li></ul><ul><li>(6 other subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>The “Other” Pop. By Race </li></ul><ul><li>Arabs </li></ul><ul><li>Armenians </li></ul><ul><li>Filipinos </li></ul><ul><li>Japanese </li></ul><ul><li>Negros </li></ul><ul><li>Siamese </li></ul><ul><li>Sinhalese </li></ul><ul><li>Turks (Asiatic) </li></ul><ul><li>(4 other subcategories) </li></ul>
    15. 15. Census Categories: Malaya 1957 <ul><li>Malaysians </li></ul><ul><li>Malays </li></ul><ul><li>Indonesian </li></ul><ul><li>All Aborigines </li></ul><ul><li>Negrito </li></ul><ul><li>Semai </li></ul><ul><li>(4 other subcategories) </li></ul><ul><li>Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>Hokkien </li></ul><ul><li>Tiechiu </li></ul><ul><li>Khek (Hakka) </li></ul><ul><li>Cantonese </li></ul><ul><li>Hainanese </li></ul><ul><li>Hokchia </li></ul><ul><li>Hokchiu </li></ul><ul><li>Kwongsai </li></ul><ul><li>Henghwa </li></ul><ul><li>Other Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>Indians </li></ul><ul><li>Indian Tamil </li></ul><ul><li>Telegu </li></ul><ul><li>Malayali </li></ul><ul><li>Other Indian </li></ul><ul><li>Others </li></ul><ul><li>Eurasian </li></ul><ul><li>Ceylon Tamil </li></ul><ul><li>Other Ceylonese </li></ul><ul><li>Pakistani </li></ul><ul><li>Thai (Siamese) </li></ul><ul><li>Other Asian </li></ul><ul><li>British </li></ul><ul><li>Other European </li></ul><ul><li>Others (not European or Asian) </li></ul>
    16. 16. Census Categories: Singapore 2000 <ul><li>Chinese </li></ul><ul><li>“ Persons of Chinese origin” </li></ul><ul><li>Hokkien </li></ul><ul><li>Teochew </li></ul><ul><li>Cantonese </li></ul><ul><li>Hakka </li></ul><ul><li>Hainanese </li></ul><ul><li>Hockchia </li></ul><ul><li>Foochow </li></ul><ul><li>Henghua </li></ul><ul><li>Shanghainese </li></ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Malay </li></ul><ul><li>“ Persons of Malay or Indonesian origin” </li></ul><ul><li>Javanese </li></ul><ul><li>Boyanese </li></ul><ul><li>Bugis </li></ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Indian </li></ul><ul><li>“ Persons of Indian, Pakistani, Bangledeshi and Sri Lankan origin” </li></ul><ul><li>Tamil </li></ul><ul><li>Malayali </li></ul><ul><li>Punjabi </li></ul><ul><li>Bengali </li></ul><ul><li>Singhalese </li></ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Other Ethnic Group </li></ul><ul><li>“ All persons other than Chinese, Malays and Indians” </li></ul><ul><li>Eurasians </li></ul><ul><li>Europeans </li></ul><ul><li>Arabs </li></ul><ul><li>Japanese </li></ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul>
    17. 17. Census <ul><li>Singapore Census 1871 to 2000 </li></ul><ul><li>Shifting categories, shifting relationships between categories. </li></ul><ul><li>What happens to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>European? African? Chinese? Malay? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eurasian? Bugis? Hindoo? Tamil? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In each census, how would you categorize yourself? </li></ul>
    18. 18. Racial, Ethnic, National Communities <ul><li>Markers of commonality are arbitrary… </li></ul><ul><li>Race = use of biological, physiological characteristics as markers of similarity and difference. </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnicity = use of culturally expressed characteristics as markers of similarity and difference. </li></ul><ul><li>Nationality = political affiliation with a state (citizenship); but also combined with senses of ethnicity (ethno-nationalism) </li></ul>
    19. 19. “ Caucasian” <ul><li>Term used by Blumbach (1775) </li></ul><ul><li>People from the Caucuses taken to be prototypes of the race </li></ul><ul><li>For Blumbach this included people from across Europe, the Middle East, North Africa </li></ul><ul><li>By the Twentieth Century = “White” Europeans </li></ul><ul><li>What are you?... Caucasian, White, Ang Moh, Mat Salleh, Gaijin, Gwai-Loh… are these really all “the same thing”? </li></ul>
    20. 20. “ Malay”/Melayu <ul><li>Jambi-Melayu, center of “Srivijaya” trade empire c.12 th century. </li></ul><ul><li>Melayu = Royal Lineage (“Bangsa” pre-20 th C.) </li></ul><ul><li>Melayu = Having a Raja ( Kerajaan ) </li></ul><ul><li>Melayu = Malay “race” (“Bangsa” 20 th C.) </li></ul><ul><li>Melayu = Muslim ( synonymous ?) </li></ul><ul><li>The same sorts of historical shifts can be found with every ethinic name… are Chinese subjects of the Qin Emperor? (That is the origin of “Chinese”) </li></ul>
    21. 21. Race, Ethnicity and Nation Historical Perspective <ul><li>From the 19 th to 20 th centuries, race was replaced (displaced) by ethnicity. </li></ul><ul><li>From the 19 th century onward, “nationality” has straddled an unclear conceptual area between ethnicity (a ‘culturally similar’ group of people) and affiliation with a territorial-state (citizenship). </li></ul>
    22. 22. The shift from RACE to ETHNICITY
    23. 23. Race, Ethnicity, Lineage <ul><li>Race (Biological Difference) appears as a effect of biological, reproductive isolation </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnicity (Cultural Difference) appears as an effect of cultural isolation </li></ul><ul><li>Over time, isolated groups of people develop biological (genetic) and cultural (ethnic) distinctiveness. </li></ul><ul><li>Lineages are lines of descent. Everyone has multiple lineages (through their mothers and fathers). </li></ul>
    24. 24. Imagining Race, Ethnicity, Nation <ul><li>Racial, Ethnic or National communities are based on beliefs which make biology (race), culture (ethnicity), or political affiliation (nationality) meaningful. </li></ul><ul><li>None of these are meaningful outside of their social construction as “imagined communities”. </li></ul>
    25. 25. Race <ul><li>Idea of Race is based on coherence of traits (esp. biological). </li></ul><ul><li>Traits do not cohere. </li></ul><ul><li>95% of biological/ genetic variation occurs within human populations </li></ul><ul><li>5% occurs between populations </li></ul><ul><li>Race remains a popular idea but scientifically useless and socially divisive </li></ul>
    26. 26. “ None of the Above” <ul><li>What are the effects of racial categorization for the people interviewed in the film? </li></ul><ul><li>What purpose does racial categorization serve? </li></ul><ul><li>How would these people identify (or be identified) if they lived in Singapore? </li></ul>
    27. 27. INTERMISSION…
    28. 28. What about CULTURAL variation?
    29. 29. Shift from Race to Ethnicity <ul><li>18 th - 19 th Century: “Race” = groups who share physical traits, customs, habits and other characteristics. (Biology AND Culture) </li></ul><ul><li>20 th Century: Ethnicity = groups who share customs, language, social views. </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnicity = Race minus Biology </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnicity became a more acceptable way of categorizing similarity and difference </li></ul>
    30. 30. Ethnicity: Two Theories <ul><li>Primordialism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Coherence (“Sharing”) of Cultural Traits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assumed Blood Ties, Race, Language, Region, Religion, Custom </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Circumstantialism (Situationalism) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Identity depends on Circumstances </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Individual circumstantialism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social, historical circumstantialism </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Problem: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Evidence supports Circumstantialism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Peoples’ feelings support Primordialism </li></ul></ul>
    31. 31. Ethnic Groups and Boundaries <ul><li>Ethnicity is based on a sense of difference. </li></ul><ul><li>Symbols & practices are not ‘ethnic’ until they become signifiers of difference. </li></ul><ul><li>Examples: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Japanese Shinto </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Malay Adat </li></ul></ul>
    32. 32. What is a “Nation”? <ul><li>A European (Primordialist) Theory </li></ul><ul><li>One “people” living on one territory governed by one state (French people, German people, Chinese people) </li></ul><ul><li>A Nation = An Ethnic Group with a State. </li></ul><ul><li>Problems: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1. People move around! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2. Culture (the marker of ethnicity) changes over time and space (without clear ‘boundaries’ between groups) </li></ul></ul>
    33. 33. Shifting meaning of “Nationality” <ul><li>19 th and 20 th Century: A “nation” is a “people” (defined in terms of a blurred combination of ‘race’ and ‘ethnicity’) </li></ul><ul><li>20 th to 21 st Century: Nationality is defined by a person’s association with a territorial-state (what passport do you hold?) </li></ul><ul><li>States create “nations” (more than “nations” being a justification for states) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Peasants in to Frenchmen” (Eugen Weber) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Singapore, Indonesia and other post-colonial ‘nation-states’ </li></ul></ul>
    34. 34. Imagined Communities (Benedict Anderson… and beyond) <ul><li>All communities – Racial, Ethnic, National, etc. – are products of cultural processes, symbols, and practices. </li></ul><ul><li>Communities exist because people imagine them to exist. </li></ul><ul><li>We can study distinct processes and practices that enable such imagining. </li></ul>
    35. 35. Census, Map, Museum* <ul><li>Cultural Practices </li></ul><ul><li>Governmentality </li></ul><ul><li>Ethnicity & Nationalism </li></ul>*From Ben Anderson (1991) Imagined Communities , Revised Ed.
    36. 36. Map <ul><li>Do maps show nations or create nations? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the relationship between maps and national identity? </li></ul>
    37. 37. Siam Mapped (Thongchai Winichakul, 1994)
    38. 38. Thai Buddhist Pilgrimage Map
    39. 39. “ History of Thailand’s Boundary”
    40. 40. “ Wake Up, Thai People”
    41. 41. The “Geo-body” of the Nation: Culturally Produced through Maps
    42. 42. Museum <ul><li>Sites for interpreting and reinterpreting the past </li></ul><ul><li>National and other frameworks </li></ul>
    43. 43. Beyond Census, Map, Museum <ul><li>Census, Map, and Museum are just three practices, symbols and institutions that enable imagined communities. </li></ul><ul><li>What other practices, symbols or institutions that enable imagined communities? </li></ul><ul><li>How do these practices, symbols, institutions… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Make us feel we are part of a community? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Signal to others that we are part of a community? </li></ul></ul>
    44. 44. Communities / Identities <ul><li>Identity = Personal relationship to a community. </li></ul><ul><li>Other “Imaged Communities” Beyond Race, Ethnicity, Race: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Religious (Faith/Belief) Communities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender, Sexuality, Kinship </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Class, Professional, Hobbies, etc… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Online Communities (the “YouTube community”) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Institutional Communities (the “NUS community”) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is this class a community? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Does the Wiki create a stronger sense of community? </li></ul></ul></ul>
    45. 45. Final Thoughts… <ul><li>Community is created through … </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Imagination and Practice </li></ul></ul><ul><li>We make our communities through imaginative practices and practical imagination. </li></ul><ul><li>What communities are you part of? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the practices through which you imagine yourself part of those communities? </li></ul>

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