Just Singing and Dancing: Official Representations of Ethnic Minority Cultures in China
Keywords:Culture, ethnic minorities, China, the Chinese government, representation
This paper uses a critical multicultural, constructivist approach to examine how the Chinese government represents minority cultures in its official discourse. Although at an abstract level the government acknowledges the contributions of minority cultures to society, our findings show a mismatched picture in terms of minority representation. Government documents and discourse recorded and obtained on the government website only highlight traditional and stereotypical cultural aspects related to minorities. These representations essentialise minority cultures, obscure their dynamism and their contributions, reinforce power hierarchies, and discourage critical reflexivity. In this context, we recommend addressing fundamental challenges undergirding this pattern in representation to develop more balanced and comprehensive understandings of minority cultures.
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