Tibetan Studies in Comparative Perspective
Edited by Chih-yu Shih, Yu-Wen Chen
Routledge – 2013 – 176 pages
Politics, history, and religion have long lent Tibet a glamorous air, particularly in the West. But Tibet can be understood in an astonishingly wide variety of other ways, including linguistic, ecological, environmental and climatological, geographical, geological, economic, biologic, sociologic, medicinal. Tibetan Studies in Comparative Perspective touches on all the elements of the Tibet issue, offering invaluable insight to a wide variety of readers, from specialists to those with a general interest in the topic. By putting readers into the shoes of all the stakeholders, from the Dalai Lama in his home in exile and the various Tibetan exile communities, to decision makers in Beijing, New Delhi, Washington and London, the issues at stake come into bold relief. Furthermore, the book examines the potential opportunities that lay ahead, documents where and how Tibetans have been dispersed and offers a glimpse into the social and political undercurrents sending shudders through this exiled nation. With the chasm between exiles and indigenous Tibetans growing ever-larger, what challenges do Tibetans confront just to remain Tibetan? And how will this shape the future of their political movement? The book provides a timely re-examination of the contemporary predicament of Tibetans, both in and out of Tibet.
This book was published as two special issues of Asian Ethnicity.
Section 1: Introduction 1. The tale of a (un-)contested people: the many faces of Tibetans and Tibetan studies Section 2: The "what" and "why" of Tibetan Studies 2. Tibet studies 3. Tibetology in contemporary China: current situation and characteristics 4. Tibet studies in Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore Section 3: The Tibet question 5. Tibet as a factor impacting China studies in India 6. India, China and Tibet: fundamental perceptions from Dharamsala, Beijing and New Delhi 7. A ‘realist’ hypocrisy? Scripting sovereignty in Sino–Tibetan relations and the changing posture of Britain and the United States 8. The Tibet question through the looking glass of Taiwan: comparative dynamics and sobering lessons Section 4: Tibetans outside Tibet 9. China’s many Tibets: Diqing as a model for ‘development with Tibetan characteristics?’ 10. Dispersal to Asia, Europe, Australasia 11. When ‘exile’ becomes sedentary: on the quotidian experiences of ‘India-born’ Tibetans in Dharamsala, north India
Chih-Yu Shih teaches at National Taiwan University and is author of Civilization, Nation and Modernity in East Asia (Routledge, 2012); Autonomy, Ethnicity and Poverty in Southwestern China (Palgrave, 2007); Negotiating Ethnicity in China: Citizenship as a Response to the State (Routledge, 2002).
Yu-Wen Chen teaches at the University College Cork and is an Honorary Research Fellow at the Institute for Human Security at La Trobe University.