From 'literati' to 'ulama': The origins of Chinese Muslim nationalist historiography

Zvi Ben Dor Benite

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Since 1951 the official Chinese historiographic position has maintained that Chinese History stands as one 'parmenidean' whole, in which national histories of the various minzu (nationalities) are at once their own singular narratives and vital components of the greater narrative as well. Only after earlier historiographic attempts to come to grips with the relationship between two reifiede entities'Islam' and 'China'-did Chinese Muslim history emerge as one national thread within the broader tapestry of Chinese history. This article surveys the emergence of the Hui minzu (Muslim national) historiography (or the body of literature designated as Huizu shi; that is, 'Hui nationality history') that arose in the 1950s. It suggests that it used earlier Chinese Muslim attempts at self-understanding in Chinese context as the basis for its configuration of the Hui.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)83-109
    Number of pages27
    JournalNationalism and Ethnic Politics
    Issue number4
    StatePublished - Dec 2003

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Geography, Planning and Development
    • Political Science and International Relations


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