[Video] China – How to Be a Leader

Watch video here: http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNjIxNjAyNzM2.html
Watch video here:
http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNjIxNjAyNzM2.html

Kartun ini sangat menarik untuk disimak, terutama bagi mahasiswa or pembelajar studi hubungan internasional untuk memahami bagaimana proses pemilihan pemimpin di Amerika, Inggris, dan China. Video yang kudapat link-nya dari Mas NRY (bapak Dosen di UGM –> maturnuwun sanget mas :D), cukup menjelaskan alasan “China Miracle”.

Berikut ringkasan dari link videonya:
The “How Leaders Are Made” video, which has been viewed more than 1 million times since it was uploaded on Oct. 15, presents cartoon characters representing China’s President Xi Jinping and the six other men who make up the country’s ruling Standing Committee.

Read more: http://world.time.com/2013/10/17/whats-the-secret-to-chinas-incredible-success/#ixzz2iaTmNKBq

[Movie] Documentary – Please Vote For Me

PleaseVoteForMeBagi para pemerhati studi China, mungkin tahu bahwasanya negara yang dikuasai oleh pemerintahan Partai Komunis China ini, satu kata bernama “demokrasi” bisa jadi adalah sesuatu yang tidak biasa, bahkan bisa dikatakan tabu. Namun, baru saja aku coba iseng-iseng searching film, eh nemu satu film yang cukup menarik dan kontroversial untuk ukuran RRC.

Film tersebut judulnya “Please Vote for Me”. Film dokumenter yang diproduksi pada tahun 2007 ini, merekam kisah pemilihan class monitor (mungkin semacam ketua kelas) untuk siswa SD kelas 3 di the Evergreen Primary School di Wuhan, China. Ada 3 kandidat siswa yang bertarung, yaitu Luo Lei, Xu Xiaofei, dan Cheng Cheng. Mereka bertiga bertarung melawan satu sama lain dalam kampanye pemilihannya. Berbagai hal disiapkan dan cara digunakan untuk memenangkan pertarungan ini. Pemilihan yang diinisiasi oleh ibu guru mereka tersebut, cukup membuat antusian para siswa. Bahkan orang tua dari masing-masing kandidat memberikan beragam nasihat dan latihan buat para anak mereka agar siap mental untuk “bertarung” dalam pemilihan.

Pemilihan ini disebut-sebut sebagai pemilihan class monitor pertama yang pernah diadakan di sekolah di China. Dan dalam prosesnya, digunakan prinsip demokrasi klasik dengan voting dan dinamika inter-personal. Dokumenter ini menunjukkan gambaran kehidupan warga kelas menengah kota di China kontemporer. Oya, film ini pernah memenangkan the Sterling Feature Award at Silverdocs in 2007.

Bagi yang penasaran seperti apa jalannya kisah demokrasi dan pemilu di “negara komunis”, bisa menonton dokumenter ini.

Link untuk menontonnya di: http://www.gooddrama.net/chinese-movie/please-vote-for-me-2007

Jaa, selamat menonton dan mengambil pelajaran dari fenomena “unik” di China ini 😀

[Academic] Russia and China Presence in Central Asia

Russia and China Presence in Central Asia; 
Rivalry and Cooperation on Economics, Energy and Security Issues

Since the collapsing of the Soviet Union in 1991, there were some significant changes on the constellation of international geo-politics in Euro-Asia, specifically in Central Asia . Even after the disintegration of the Soviet Union, Moscow has retained extensive political, economic, and security ties with the Central Asia countries (Weitz, 2008: 52).

Ariel Cohen, argued that Greater Central Asia, which includes Iran and Afghanistan, is vital for Russia as a source of hydrocarbons and other raw materials. This region is also a strategic transit route for Russia pipelines and rail roads which could become part of the “New Silk Road” for formidable developmental engine. However, the region is a major geopolitical battleground between China, which is a regional emerging power, with Russia (Central Asia Program, 2012).

China, as the closest big country with Russia, has some development on its relationship with Russia also with its neighboring countries of the former Soviet Union in terms of trade and political cooperation (Burles, 1999: ix). Burles (1999) also mentioned that Russia and Central Asia become major suppliers of energy resources to China’s rapidly growing economy.

Relations between Russia – China and China – Central Asia can be said as complicated since the leader in Moscow and the capitals of Central Asian countries seen the China’s growing power as a threat (Burles, 1999: ix). From geopolitical perspective, Central Asia has been becoming a “contestation zone” in terms of security, energy resources and commercial opportunities. Burles mentioned that China’s growing presence in Central Asia may be indicative of its impending ascendance in continental Asia, and may provide secure land links between China and states in the Middle East (and possibly even Europe) who share the China’s ambivalence toward American power.

Richard Weitz (2008: 51) mentioned that Central Asia represents the geographic region where the security interests of China and Russia most overlap. However, this shared security interests mean that the newly independent states of Central Asia, such as: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, have not become venues for rivalry between Moscow and Beijing, but rather major unifying elements in Chinese-Russian relations.

With the weakening influence of Russia in the independent state in Central Asia, in this paper, the author would like to describe about how are the current Russia presence and influence in the region, especially its contestation with China as newly leading economic power, especially in terms of economics, energy and security issues.

Economic Potential in Central Asia

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To understand how Russia and China interest in Central Asia, firstly we should understand what the importance of this region is. Central Asia has emerged as one of the world’s fastest growing regions since the late 1990s and has shown notable development potential, that is significant for a region comprising largely of small landlocked economies with no access to the sea for trade.

Dowling and Wignaraja (2006: 16) mentioned four advantages of the region. First, the region contains a significant base of the world’s natural resources (including oil, natural gas, gold, and other metals) and its economic prospects are closely linked to international commodity prices. Second, from geopolitical perspective, it is strategically positioned as a gateway between Europe and Asia and offers extensive potential for trade, investment, and growth.

Third, the region spans a vast geographical area, with widely differing natural conditions. Many economies are landlocked and have harsh climates, both of which impose large transactions costs on economic activity. Fourth, all the economies have had a legacy of socialist-oriented economic policies and several have embarked on market-oriented reforms emphasizing macroeconomic stabilization, trade openness, and private sector development.

Russia Interest in Central Asia

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With this situation, Russian puts its economic goals in Central Asia that includes; ensuring its firms participate in developing the region’s energy resources and Central Asian oil and gas exporters continue to use Russian pipelines. Russian companies and business groups control much of the transportation systems for Central Asia’s oil , gas and electricity.

Richard Weitz (2008: 52-53) mentioned that Central Asia’s landlocked states still heavily rely on the Russia’s transportation, communications, supply-chain and other networks. It relates to the legacy of the integrated Soviet economy. The manufacturers from this region remain similarly dependent on Russian spare parts, technology and services. In other words, Central Asia is an area of special Russian influence. Furthermore, much Russian influence and assistance in Central Asia is legitimate and vital, such as: over drug-trafficking, illegal migration and some forms of security cooperation. Russia has genuine security interests in Central Asia, but it would be more convincing if it did not play the security card when no such threat exists (Nixey, 2012: 8).

In other side, many Russian companies still rely on Central Asian suppliers for essential natural resources, equipment, and other inputs. Russian firms have made some progress in developing suppliers in Russia to replace or supplement sources in other former Soviet states. The recent surge in world oil and gas prices has facilitated a major resurgence of Russian public and private investment in Central Asia.

Although most of Central Asian countries are landlocked and have historically depended on the Russia Federation for trade linkages, the growing forces of globalization will be increasingly important for the future trade prospects for this region (Dowling and Wignaraja, 2006: 82). But, for at least the next few years, Russia will continue to derive soft power from its Soviet legacy.

China Interest in Central Asia

Historically, China had ties for centuries with Central Asia, but since the 19th century, Soviet control of the region severed these relations and contacts (Weitz, 2008: 54). After the collapsing of USSR in 1991, China has reemerged as a major player in the region. China provides the Central Asian states vital non-Russian transportation routes through which the states can interact with international markets (Burles, 1999: xi).

Most importantly, China’s growing energy needs represent another force driving its increased interest and involvement in Central Asia. China’s growing interest in securing Central Asia oil and gas could lead Beijing to reconsider its policy of regional deference. Richard Weitz (2008) argued that with the combination of a booming economy and declining domestic energy production, it results China’s importation of an increasingly large percentage of its oil and natural gas. Chinese policy makers have sought to enhance their access to energy resources from Central Asia, as well as Russia (Weitz, 2008: 56).

Another concern of China in Central Asia is its economic relations and cross border trade with Central Asia countries. Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) is one of six autonomous regions in China. Its location in China’s western border, make Xinjiang become special in the eye of central government in Beijing. Xinjiang has unique geopolitical situation, where it becomes the frontier of China with Central Asia. China views Xinjiang as a continental bridge which extends China’s reach to Central Asia and simultaneously serves as a buffer to China proper (Warikoo, 2011).

Xinjiang is susceptible to various influences and has had a history of interaction with Russia and Russia’s central Asian republics, which is an economic advantage for China. But in other side it also becomes a serious liability. China’s program to develop the west and Xinjiang’s economic viability hinges on trade with near neighbors. However, as China moves to create infrastructure to integrate Xinjiang into the region, it created an undesired influences into the province.

In order to develop Xinjiang economy, China government also tries to expand its economic influence to Central Asia. Warikoo (2011) explained that central government created special economic zones to facilitate cross border trade of Xinjiang with adjoining Central Asian Republics, in a manner that most of the business and trade remain in the hands of Chinese. Xinjiang also used as a spring board to penetrate and influence Central Asian economy, polity and society (Warikoo, 2011: 181).

Shared Russian – Chinese Interest

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Central Asia perhaps represents the geographic region where the security interests of China and Russia most intersect. Russia and China often compete for Central Asian energy supplies and commercial opportunities. These two governments share a desire to limit instability in the region (Weitz, 2008: 60).

The fact that now the countries of Central Asia still remain economically and politically oriented toward Moscow, albeit to varying degrees. This orientation is the product of Russia’s long domination of the region. But, with the declining of Russian power, Burles argued that China’s influence in Central Asia will be growing. The countries of Central Asia, even regions within individual countries, are slowly reorienting themselves in directions more appropriate to their geographic position, political conditions, and economic needs (Burles, 1999: 51).

China has never expressed any interest in spreading influence when formulating its own policies into Central Asia. However, as China’s economic, political and military power grows, this behavior toward deeper involvement of China in Central Asian affairs is likely to change. As it mentioned before, China’s main policy priorities involve avoiding instability in the region, securing access to energy resources and expanding economic cooperation.

The issue of ethnic separatism and terrorism in their border territories become the major concern of these countries in terms of security. China opposes the spread of extremism movement in Central Asia and supports the region’s security. Beijing’s primary motivation for this action is to minimize the potential for instability emerging in the region that might threaten its domestic stability and economic development (Burles, 1999: xi).

Another issue on regional stability and security is the US military presence in Central Asia, which creates the government of both Russia and China feel clearly uneasy. The regional instability following from the US invasion of Iraq that have seen the deposition of pro-Moscow governments around Russia’s borders have led many influential Russian to see the US presence as a major source of instability in its own rights (Weitz, 2008: 61). Russian and Chinese leaders have avoided directly challenging the American military presence in Central Asia. Despite the overlapping interests of Russia and China, their policies in the Central Asia region still frequently conflict.

As for the energy issues, in some respects, China and Russia should be natural energy partners. Chinese energy demand is soaring and Russia’s oil and gas deposits lie much closer to China than the more distant energy sources Africa and the Persian Gulf (Weitz, 2008: viii).

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization

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The overlapping security interests between Russia and China have manifested themselves most visibly in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (Weitz, 2008: 65). The making of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is become one of the ways to accelerating regional integrations and cooperation between Russian, China and Central Asia countries.

SCO started in 1996 and 1997, when Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan signed a document that established the ‘Shanghai Five’ to deal with border delimitation and fostering trust and good neighborly relations between the five countries. Then in June 2001 Uzbekistan joined the ‘Shanghai Five’ and then they signed the Declaration on the Establishment of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (Kalra and Saxena, 2007). Since its founding, SCO has essentially functioned as a Chinese-Russian condominium that provides Beijing and Moscow with a convenient multilateral framework to manage their interests in the newly independent countries of Central Asia (Weitz, 2008: 65).

SCO engages the Central Asian nations with Russia and China in the region, also observer countries, such as Afghanistan, Mongolia, India, Pakistan and Iran. The aim of SCO is not only about security and balance of power, but also focusing on economic and social integration of the region and has gone to great lengths to create confidence in its desire to promote prosperity and cooperation (Kalra and Saxena, 2007). The goals of the SCO are to encourage trade links, social and political cooperation, find joint solutions to problems of environment, infrastructure, education, and to build scientific and cultural links between member states, the region as a whole and internationally. The future of the SCO lays more and more in the realm of economic and social issues.

However, since 2003 the SCO has sponsored a number of anti-terrorist exercises that involve paramilitary as well as intelligence and law enforcement personnel. China and Kyrgyzstan in 2002 conducted the first bilateral anti-terror exercise within the SCO framework.

Closing

With the weakening of Russia, its influence in Central Asia is declining. This reality becomes a great chance for China to take over Russia’s influence in the region. However, Russia still has a dominant energy presence in Central Asia. Interesting argument from Nixey (2012) it mentioned that if the most Central Asian given a choice between dominion by Russia or by China, they would currently choose Russia. It shows that China should be patient to take this chance fully. The situation might be more complicated with the presence of the US military base in Central Asia, which can disturb the balance of power.

For China, influence in the Central Asia is a means to achieve other domestic and foreign policy objectives such as securing energy resources. But for Russia, influence is, at least in part, an end in itself (Nixey, 2012).

References

[Academic] China Soft Power in SEA?

Berhubung nilai semester 2 kemaren sudah keluar semua (Alhamdulillah), maka paper dan tugas kuliah sudah bisa saya publish di sini. Anyway, maafkan saya yang akhir-akhir ini terlalu malas untuk menulis dan meng-update blog, dan memilih jalur singkat dengan cara upload tugas XD. Selamat membaca, terutama yang tertarik dengan studi China.

Reading Note: China Soft Power in South East Asia

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This reading note is based on the article written by H.H. Michael Hsiao and Alan Yang, titled Soft Power Politics in the Asia Pacific: Chinese and Japanese Quests for Regional Leadership. It was explained about two countries on struggling for leadership in SEA. Located in strategic position, South East Asia (SEA) region and ASEAN as regional organization become significant for strong economic power such as China, Japan and South Korea. Not only its geopolitical situation, SEA has abundance of natural resources that being needed for industrial countries, as well as its market potential.

Since the 1990s, China has strengthened its relations with ASEAN states in fields of foreign aid, trade, finance, infrastructure, business, labor, environment, and development as well as tourism (Hsiao & Yang, 2009). Not only hard power, another approach to spread the influence of a country is by soft power. The essence of Joseph Nye’s concept of soft power is an ability to attract others; such an attraction serves to persuade others to accept one’s purposes without explicit threat or violent exchange. The soft power of a country rests primarily on three resources: its culture (in places where it is attractive to others), its political values (when it lives up to them at home and abroad), and its foreign policies (when they are seen as legitimate and having moral authority) (Nye, 2013).

China’s soft power in SEA, especially in grass-root level, in my opinion is perhaps not yet as successful as Japan and South Korea’s Halyu. Japan soft power diplomacy has been exist for decade, while China relatively new on emphasizing their soft power. From the 2008 opinion poll on Japan’s image in Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam, it results that Japan is a trustworthy friend for ASEAN countries; friendly to their country; and respondents had positive images of Japan’s economic and technical contribution to their country. These results demonstrate a warming attitude of ASEAN people to Japan and corroborate the efficacy of Tokyo’s soft power diplomacy (in Hsiao & Yang, 2009).

What made China is not successful enough for its soft power in SEA? I argue that beside of different starting time, another factor that might be very important for China to be more influential is its domestic political situation. Chin (2013) mentioned that the lack of serious political reform in China caused its soft power has not directly translated into more supportive views of its quest for status and legitimacy. With respect to the latter, it will be increasingly difficult for the government to prevent its domestic record on political and civil freedoms from affecting China’s international credibility.

In article titled “What China and Russia Don’t Get About Soft Power?”, Nye argued that for a rising power like China whose growing economic and military might frightens its neighbors into counter-balancing coalitions, a smart strategy includes soft power to make China look less frightening and the balancing coalitions less effective. China makes the mistake of thinking that government is the main instrument of soft power. In today’s world, information is not scarce but attention is, and attention depends on credibility. Nye’s view on soft power springs is largely from individuals, the private sector, and civil society. So that for China to succeed, it will need to match words and deeds in their policies, be self-critical, and unleash the full talents of their civil societies.

China might be powerful economically, but it seems that from soft-power influence, it will be a long way for China to “conquer” SEA social and culturally.

References:

[Review] Dislocating China – Dru C. Gladney

Daripada “mubadzir” hanya sebagai tugas kampus, lebih baik di share di sini. Siapa tahu ada yang tertarik untuk baca bukunya :D! Khusus buat teman-teman yang tertarik seputar studi Muslim Hui di China. Here, another book written by Dru C. Gladney.

BOOK REVIEW II
Dislocating China: Reflections on Muslims, Minorities, and Other Subaltern Subjects
Dru C. Gladney, London, Hurst & Company, 2004, 414 pages

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Gladney is one of the leading scholars who have expertise in China’s ethnic minorities, especially on Muslim minorities such as the Hui. Gladney’s Dislocating China is an excellent introduction into the ways in which ethnicity and religion intersect in contemporary China today. Many of the chapters discussed about China’s Muslims, but the book as a whole is more wide ranging examining ethnic representation in Chinese cinema, ethnic ‘culture parks’ and in popular culture. The purpose of this book is seeks to understand how disenfranchised groups and other subaltern subjects (whether they be Muslims, minorities, students, or gendered others) might enhance our understanding of “nation-ness” and “Chinese-ness” in the context of China.

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Dru C. Gladney

One of the central themes of the book is Gladney’s contestation of “Han” as a legitimate ethnic group. In some discussions, most scholars still tend to accept that Chinese representation is dominated by Han groups, and ethnic minorities is marginalized minorities. In other words, there is a tendency on homogenization of Chinese culture. This is assumed homogeneity of China as a nation-state made up of a unified and undifferentiated Han majority and a few ethnic groups in its border areas that Gladney sets out to challenge; through giving voice to some subalterns, in order to gain a better understanding of the dynamics of Chinese society and culture. Gladney challenges this view and argued that the dichotomy of majority and minority, also primitive and modern, is historically constructed. He shows consistency in whole chapters in this book on pursuing his main idea about understanding Chinese society and culture from the subaltern perspective, and to deconstruct notions of a monolithic Han majority.

The book consists of 7 parts, which consist of 16 chapters talking about dislocating ethnic identity in China from various aspects, such as: recognitions, representations, folklorizations, ethnicizations, indigenizations, socializations and politizations. In part I about Recognitions, include background of cultural nationalism and forms of displaying nationalism in China. Gladney argues that nationalism is not simply a set of imagined ideas, but constitutes powerful styles of representations. He points out the selectivity within the cultural taxonomy of nationalities in China. The emerging and strengthening forms of cultural nationalisms of various groups in turn influence Chinese nationalism.

Part II consists of two chapters on Representations. Majority/ minority objectifications are commodified in the Chinese public sphere, reifying certain notions of minority primitivity in order to establish majority modernity. The main argument is that in art (one of the examples is on contemporary Chinese cinema), the objectified portrayal of minority groups is essential for the construction of the “unmarked”, modern, civilized Han majority. Part III is about “Folklorizations”, starts with concern on the Chinese Muslims (the Hui) “hybridity” in which is shown to challenge Samuel Huntington’s theory about the clash of civilizations. He also explained the Hui’s interconnections of localism and transnationalism to the Muslim world.

Part IV about “Ethnicizations”, explains the contradictory nature of Muslim hybridity, suggesting that essentialized and static theories of identity, ethnicity, and nationality fail to take account of simultaneous selves and the oppositional shifting of highly politicized identities. He proposes that ethnic identity is shaped by the dialogical interaction of traditions of descent and state policy, and is continuously negotiated and re-defined. Gladney also writes a similar case/ analogy to the Han majority about the homogeneity of the majority groups of other countries, such as the Turks of Turkey and the Russians of the former Soviet Union.

In Part V, “Indigenizations”, discuss about the role of the state in channeling identities and local resistances to those state-defined histories. Gladney examine the role of indigeneity in shaping Uyghur identity in northwest China. It focuses on the dynamic nature of ethnic identity, in which the state is a regulatory, channeling force, and also suppression towards local resistance. The next chapter in this part talking about Uyghur “cyber-separatist” movement (imagined homeland of East Turkestan) that underlines how transnationalism as well as the representations of the Uyghur by the state all promote an objectified representation of Uyghur identity.

In Part VI “Socializations”, Gladney argues about centralized educational system to Hui ethnography. Centralized state education has been one of the most powerful tools for acculturating China’s subalterns along predetermined path, other traditions of knowledge transmission that have maintained parallel kinds of knowledge and history. In other means, it creating and integrating them into the Chinese nation state. Education remains a contested arena in which competing and often conflicting sets of norms are negotiated. Chapter 13 compares attitudes to prosperity between Hui and Han.

As for in the latest part, about “Politicizations”, focused on local responses in China to world events. In chapter 14 discusses the views of Hui and Uyghur subalterns about the Gulf Wars in 1991 and 2003, which demonstrates the diversity of China’s Muslims; how they participate in international relations. Chapter 15 connects Chinese subalterns’ responses to global events about student protests in Tiananmen Square to the end of the Cold War.

In the conclusion part, Gladney argued that the categorization and taxonomization of all levels of Chinese society, from political economy, to social class, to gender, to ethnicity and nationality indicates a wide-ranging and ongoing project of internal colonialism. What make this part more interesting that is Gladney resume some of the current issues in China such as China after 9/11, subaltern perspectives on the Chinese geo-body, Chinese nationalism and its subaltern implications, subaltern separatism and Chinese response, and argument about “China’s expanding internal colonialism”.

Gladney ends his book by raising new questions; what will happen to those Chinese citizens on its borders should a nationalist movement rise up that sees them as more of a threat than as part of a China that is multinational and multi-ethnic? If nationalist sentiments prevail during this time of transition, what will happen to those subaltern subjects currently living in China, but beyond the Great Wall? (page 367).

Book Review: Ethnic Identity in China – Muslim Minority Nationality

Semester ini, aku mengambil mata kuliah Development of Ethnic Minority in Southwest China. Kuliah yang berlangsung tiap Jumat pagi ini, membahas tentang etnis minoritas yang ada di China, khususnya di daerah Selatan – Barat Daya China (Guangxi, Yunnan, Tibet, etc). Nah, di kelas ini profesor meminta para mahasiswanya untuk membuat review buku yang terkait dengan etnis minoritas di China.

Untuk tugas ini, aku memilih buku karangan Dru C Gladney, seorang antropolog yang expert dalam kajian komunitas Hui China. Berhubung aku memang sangat tertarik dengan Muslim di China, dan (insyaAllah) akan menulis tesis terkait ini, maka aku membaca bukunya. Berikut review singkat tentang buku Gladney :). Selamat membaca!

Ethnic Identity in China: The Making of a Muslim Minority Nationality
(Case Studies in Cultural Anthropology)
Dru C. Gladney, Florida, Harcourt Brace & Company, 1998, 195 pages

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This book, which is consisting of 7 chapters, explains how are the Muslims “made” in China and how their ethnic and cultural identity formed in China. The “Hui” is the largest Muslim society among 55 official ethnic minorities in China, in which 10 of them are Muslim. Gladney wrote this book based on his field research for period of years, meeting and talking to Hui in more than 400 households throughout China (from north to south and east to west). He found a problem to discover how the Hui view themselves, how they recognize who is Hui. In the introduction, he said that he felt an ambiguity for the status of them. “After almost 3 years of fieldwork in China, the longer I searched for the Hui, the less I understood what made them Hui (p.1)”.

Compare to another 55 ethnic minorities in China, the Hui has the most special case among the others since the Hui distinguished separately and they are out of the four commons category outlined by Joseph Stalin. They generally do not have their own language, peculiar dress, literature, music or the other cultural inventories by which more colorful minorities are portrayed. George and Louise Spindler, the editors said that; for the Hui there is no “we”, because the Hui consist of widely divergent communities living within varying ecological contexts and experience their ethnicity in radically different ways, and they inhabit every major metropolitan area of China and are considered China’s major urban ethnic group. Moreover, they are internally diverse and their presumed ethnicity so ambiguous, so that they are out of the Stalin’s category.

To get further understanding about this matter, Gladney explains the root cause of this problem. In introduction part, Gladney explains about the uniting of China through the politics of ethnic identification and Han nationalism, as well as explanation about “unofficial” ethnicity. China’s centralized, state-sponsored policies as well as cultural politics and identity, directed at Muslims and other minorities. Gladney asked; “Why would anyone want to be recognized as an official minority nationality? And why would the government want to recognize them in the first place?” In the second part, it describes more about who are the Hui. Gladney tries to identify the Hui and the background of the making of the Hui nationality as their ethnic identity in China. The explanation is through ethnicity theory from many approaches, such as: the Chinese-Stalinist approach, the Culturalist approach, the circumstantialist approach. Then, Gladney gives more specific case studies about ethno-religious resurgence in a northwestern Sufi community, fundamentalist revival in Na homeland and the ethno-religious roots, also socioeconomic context and local government policies of Na identity.

The next chapter describes case studies about Chang Ying, gender, marriage and identity in a Hui autonomous village ethno-historical origin of a Hui autonomous village. Chapter five explain more about the urban Hui experience in Beijing, specifically in Oxen street (Niu jie). This chapter also explains government policy and urban strategies. While in chapter 6, Gladney described Chendai, ethnic revitalization in Quanzhou, Fujian. This cultural basis for Chendai Hui identity had a historical monument to Hui Islamic heritage. An interesting part in this chapter is about ethnic identity and ethnic policy of the Taiwanese Muslims. In the end of his book, Gladney explains about ethnic national identity in the contemporary Chinese State.

Compare to other book, Gladney gives detail explanation about the “ambiguity” status of the Hui as an ethnic in China. Specifically, he gives the reader basic understanding about Hui’s identity as Muslim minority nationality, before explaining some case studies and the Hui’s life nowadays. After read this book, I can understand more about the “uniqueness” of Hui’s identity and status as a minority ethnic in China, and its consequences and impact on some issues/ phenomenon in current China’s situation.

Semester Baru! Semangat Baru!

Semester 2 sudah dimulai! Ndak terasa, sudah tiga minggu semester ini berjalan. Dan tugas-tugas pun mulai silih berganti hadir TT__TT. However, ada kesenangan tersendiri ketika mulai menjalani tugas sebagai seorang mahasiswa yang (seharusnya) rajin membaca dan pergi ke perpustakaan untuk memperluas cakrawala pengetahuannya :D.

Di semester ini, aku kembali mengambil 4 mata kuliah (*dengan tugas bejibun yang mendampinginya), antara lain: Development Policies of the Asia Pacific Region, Religion in Taiwan, Political Development of Taiwan, dan Modernization and Ethnic Groups of Southwest China. 

It seems that walaupun daku adalah lulusan “Hubungan Internasional” dengan titel Sarjana Ilmu Politik, aku tak lagi terlalu mendalami hard politics. Semakin hari selama di Taiwan sini, aku memiliki kecenderungan yang lain. Oh No! Aku mulai beralih hati ke antropologi dan etnologi~ ahahay~ (Geje me :D)

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Aku menemukan passion dan kesenangan dalam mempelajari dua bidang keilmuan ini, yang berfokus pada society and culture. Sometimes, I said kenapa gak dari dulu aye konsentrasi ke bidang ini! hahaha… (*oops, bukan maksudnya menyesali apa yang sudah kulewati selama 5 tahun 2 bulan di bangku kuliah). Kucoba analisis, di Indonesia studi terkait antropologi dan etnologi tidak “seterkenal” jurusan sosial yang populer seperti manajemen, akuntansi, psikologi, hubungan internasional atau komunikasi. Karena para siswa SMA tahun terakhir, tidak tahu detail terkait apa yang akan mereka pelajari, dan lebih tergiur pada “prospek” kerja di masa depan.

Alhamdulillah, untukku belum terlalu terlambat. Di jenjang pendidikan master, ilmu (terutama sosial) menurutku semakin ter-spesifikkan di satu sisi, juga ter-interdisipliner-kan di sisi lain. Sehingga, jangan heran kalau batas-batas keilmuan sosial semakin faded. Di Taiwan sini, aku belajar di jurusan Asia Pacific Studies, which has very broad issues and themes. As the brief description of the program: We offer an interdisciplinary approach with four areas of concentration; international relations, society and culture, political economy and public governance.

Nah, ke depannya aku memantapkan diri untuk mengambil fokus di society and culture, which is sangat related terkait antropologi dan etnologi. Pun, aku baru tahu kalau di dalam studi ini, ada lagi spesifikasi yang lebih khusus. Maka, jika ditanya aku punya minat khusus yang mana, maka kan kujawab: religion and cultural anthropology in East Asia and Central Asia :D. 

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InsyaAllah, di semester ini aku akan mulai mencicil penelitian tesisku seputar Muslim Minority in China and Taiwan. Mohon doanya ya kawans :)! Smoga ilmu ini bisa bermanfaat. aamiin….

Q.S. Al Hujuraat (49): 13 = “Hai manusia, sesungguhnya Kami menciptakan kamu dari seorang laki-laki dan seorang perempuan dan menjadikan kamu berbangsa – bangsa dan bersuku-suku supaya kamu saling kenal-mengenal. Sesungguhnya orang yang paling mulia diantara kamu disisi Allah ialah orang yang paling taqwa diantara kamu. Sesungguhnya Allah Maha Mengetahui lagi Maha Mengenal….”

Xinjiang, I’ll come!

Bismillah…

“Bermimpilah, karena Tuhan akan memeluk mimpi-mimpimu” ― Arai (Sang Pemimpi)

Alhamdulillah, hari rabu senantiasa menjadi hari yang istimewa dan kutunggu-tunggu tiap pekannya dalam semester ini. Mengapa? Karena dua kelas favoritku dilaksanakan pada hari itu :)! Bila teman-teman ingat dengan postinganku sebelumnya tentang Oroqen Performance, tentu sudah paham mengapa :).

Nah, untuk Rabu pekan ini (14/11/2012) Dr. Chang, dosen Ethnic Development in Mainland China mengajak kami para mahasiswanya untuk menonton pertunjukan (lagi! :D!!) dengan memberikan tiket gratis nonton di Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall :D! Sebelum menonton, kami diajak makan malam dulu di sebuah bistro bakery di dekat lokasi (pancen double baiknya, laoshi-ku ini :D!!

Oya, fyi dosenku ini bernama Jiun Yi Chang. Beliau merupakan peneliti, praktisi, dan ahli etnis minoritas di China dan juga studi tentang Tibet :). Setiap kali kuliah, beliau selalu berbagi cerita tentang pengalaman dan perjalanan puluhan tahun di lapangan. Sungguh menginspirasiku untuk melakukan hal yang sama :D!

Foto2 pas makan malam bareng sebelum pertunjukan. Yang paling depan sebelah kanan itu dosenku!

Nah, untuk kali ini pertunjukan yang akan kami tonton berasal dari etnis minoritas China yang ada di daerah barat, yaitu Xinjiang Uyghur. Beragam tarian dan musik instrumen tradisional disajikan dalam 2 jam. Sungguh, aku sangat terkesan dengan pertunjukan ini, maasyaAllah. Luar biasa sekali keragaman budaya dan suku bangsa di dunia. Khususnya untuk Xinjiang, budaya mereka merupakan perpaduan antara Timur Tengah, India dan China; UNIK!

Ini salah satu adegan tariannya. maap gak jelas, soalnya ngambil fotonya sembunyi2 :p
Yg ini kayak ada campuran Eropa-nya

Bagi pengamat studi China atau dunia Islam, mungkin nama Xinjiang sudah tidak terlalu asing. Xinjiang merupakan salah satu dari lima autonomous region yang ada di China. Daerah ini dimukimi oleh etnis Uyghur yang mayoritas beragama Islam. Secara fisik dan budaya, mereka sebenarnya lebih dekat dengan masyarakat di negara-negara Asia Tengah yang berakhiran nama -Stan. Nah, kemudian apa kaitannya antara Xinjiang dengan postinganku kali ini?

Sebenarnya, nama Xinjiang sudah terngiang-ngiang di benakku sejak beberapa tahun terakhir. Minatku terhadap contemporary Islamic studies dan Silk Road, telah membawaku hingga ke negeri Formosa ini :). Trus, apa maksudnya?

Aku punya mimpi yang besar untuk mengunjungi daerah ini, namun bukan dengan “bungkus” jalan-jalan saja, tetapi juga ada kaitannya dengan akademis. Dan, memang luar biasa, Allah Maha Segalanya! Daku berjodoh menemukan jurusanku (di IMAS NCCU) yang menawarkan mata kuliah kajian China dan minoritas :D! Dan terlebih daku mendapatkan rejeki beasiswa untuk studinya. Alhamdulillah, bahagianya~

你們究竟否認你們的主的哪一件恩典呢?( Nǐmen jiùjìng fǒurèn nǐmen de zhǔ de nǎ yī jiàn ēndiǎn ne?) –> maka, nikmat Tuhan kamu yang manakah yang kamu dustakan?

Selepas dari menonton pertunjukan itu, niatku untuk berkunjung dan melakukan riset lapangan di Xinjiang Uyghur semakin berkobar! Kemudian, dengan segenap hati kurancang rencanaku untuk bisa ke sana. Kucari-cari informasi sedemikian detail, agar mimpiku ini semakin konkrit 🙂 (#bukan sekedar angan ^^). Salah satunya adalah dengan survey transportasi untuk menuju ke sana. Dari website INI, aku mendapatkan jadwal dan perkiraan harga tiket untuk menuju ke Urumqi (ibukota Xinjiang) dari stasiun Beijing West. Waaah, jadi nostalgia, ingat perjalanan “tergila” yang kulakukan tahun 2010 lalu ^^

Ini peta rute kereta Beijing West – Urumqi

Bismillah, mantapkan niat dan langkah untuk menuju ke Xinjiang! Xinjiang, tunggu aku di sana :D! I’ll come soon. insyaAllah :D!

Oroqen (鄂倫春族) Performance

My school time in Taipei has been beginning since 3 weeks ago. I took 4 classes this semester, and one of them is “Ethnic Development in Mainland China”. Why I took this class? Simply because I’m planning to write about Chinese minority for my thesis. Beside of that, this class is really interesting because both the lecturer also the content of the study is made me really curious.

At the first meeting, Dr. Chang (the lecturer) explained about the syllabus of the class. I’m really excited when I read that there are two performance class on it; watching the Chinese minority ethnic performance. For the first performance, Dr. Chang gave us free ticket to watch “Brave Oroqen” performance, on Saturday, 29th September 2012 in Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall.

Inside the SYS Memorial Hall

This is my first time to see an ethnic performance, so I’m truly excited when I got this chance. The hall gate was opened at 7 pm, but many people already queuing there since 6.30 pm and it’s a very long one. I can saw excitement in their face, and so does mine. After entering the hall and found my seat, I heard an introduction about the whole line of the performance. Although I didn’t understand Chinese very well, I still can understand what they want to deliver. Because before going to SYS hall, I did a small research about what Oroqen is, so that I can get preliminary information and understand the big frame of the performance.

Anyway, what is Oroqen? The Oroqen or Elunchun (鄂倫春族; Èlúnchūn zú) are one of the oldest ethnic groups in northeast China and they are one of 56 ethnic groups which still existed in PRC. According to the 2000 Census, total population estimated 8,196 where 44.54% live in Inner Mongolia and 51.52% along the Heilongjiang River (Amur) in the province of Heilongjiang. They speak Oroqen language, a Northern Tungusic language spoken in the People’s Republic of China. It’s interesting to know that the Oroqen language is still unwritten. However, the majority of the Oroqen are capable of reading and writing Chinese and some can also speak the Daur language (Wikipedia).

Overall, the show lasted around 1, 5 hours. With wearing their traditional customs, they perform many songs and dances, which describe their daily life and tradition. The first chapter of the performance was about a group who performed Oroqen daily life activities and family life, also about their hunting activities, religious activities, and activities in each season (fall, winter, spring and summer). My first impression was their life is really connected to the nature. And I think it formed their cultures and tradition. We can see it from their clothing, religion, and activities.

Knowing the meaning of Oroqen itself, which means “the people inhabiting on mountains” or “the people employing reindeer”, we can understand directly what the performance want to show. Oroqen people are expert on hunting. Not only the man, it mentioned that Oroqen women also have a good shooting talent. It is because their living environment is based on hunting, which is important for their source of food and clothing. Their clothing, shoes, hats and household appliances is made from various mountain animals’ skin, such as deer furs, bearskin, birch bark, etc. The traditional dwelling which called sierranju (xierenzhu) is covered with birch bark in the summer and with deer furs in the winter (Wikipedia; Oroqen people). Those clothing have very beautiful pattern and shape, and it seems very warm if we use it in winter.

Oroqen people with their unique clothes 🙂

From the article I read, it mentioned that with the changes of time, rapid development of society and the improvement of living standards, now Oroqen people has no significant difference with Han majority, since they are using modern clothing. But older people are still willing to wear traditional national dress and in every festival and special occasion, all the Oroqen people dressed in traditional costume.

The next part of the show is about the Oroqen religion. The Oroqen believe in shamanism, the worship of natural objects, and animism. It can be seen from a shaman who did a ritual in front of a tall larch tree, which the trunk is cut off bark, and they draw a face shape above also covered it with a red cloth. This is to show their worshiping to mountain god. Oroqen Shaman’s wearing a special clothes, named cap of God, God clothes and tambourine. This clothing appearance is resembles samurai armor. According to text, Shamanism in northeast China has nearly a thousand years of history as a spiritual and cultural phenomenon. But with the social development and the progress of science, shamanism has been faded and now only become a historical and cultural phenomenon.

Me & the Oroqen Shaman

What made me interested is how the CCP/ Chinese government policy related to Oroqen religion. It said that until the early 1950s the main religion of the Oroqen was shamanism. In the summer of 1952 cadres of the Chinese communist party coerced the leaders of the Oroqen to give up their “superstitions” and abandon any religious practices.

The next chapter of the show is about Oroqen traditional Arts. They showed us various dances and folk songs which used for various occasion. From the national books of Chinese ethnic minorities volume, it said that the Oroqen dance can be divided into three categories; entertainment, ritual and religion. Mostly, the dances imitate the animal movements or represent the nature such as the blooming flower in the spring season. Many man and woman are dancing together, and the way they dance has special rhythm; the speed is from slow to fast to intense the action performances. And another thing that I learned from this performance is about their etiquette. The main etiquette has knees the greeting and kowtow the two feet. The Oroqen very respect the elderly and their elders. Kowtow ceremony purposes pray God worship, weddings, funerals, festivals and other occasions.

After watching the performance, I become more interested about ethnic minorities in China. The performance helps me to understand how their culture and tradition are. Furthermore, I become more interested on how Chinese government maintains those 56 ethnic minorities. What kind of policies and support that the government gave to develop the minorities? How to manage the minorities as one nation of China? How the minorities adapt with the fast growing development of China? How the Oroqen keep their tradition and cultures? I hope that I can find the answer and explore more about ethnic minorities in China.

Special thanks to Aarin for taking the picture

Sources:

Online Sources

Pictures

Private collection of Retno Widyastuti. September 29th, 2012

Journey to Wuhan

Wuhan, ibukota dari Propinsi Hubei di daerah China Tengah, merupakan kota tempat tinggal teman-teman China seperjuanganku di AsTW 2010. Saat mengunjungi negeri panda akhir Juni – awal Juli yang lalu, aku menyempatkan diri untuk berkunjung ke Wuhan. Lokasinya cukup jauh dari Beijing, memakan waktu sekitar 11 jam perjalanan dengan kereta, dengan total jarak sekitar 1220 km.

Perjalananku ke sana dimulai dengan membeli tiket di Stasiun Kereta Beijing (pusat). Tiket kereta yang kubeli adalah tiket soft seat seharga kurang lebih 500.000 kalau dirupiahkan. Memang sangat mahal. Namun, mengingat jaraknya yang jauh dan fasilitas kereta yang setara dengan kereta eksekutif di Indonesia, ya tak mengapalah. Saatnya menikmati hasil menabung 2 tahun terakhir ini :D.

Kereta yang kugunakan adalah jurusan Beijing Xi – Hankou dengan kode kereta Z3. Di China, jenis kereta dibagi-bagi berdasarkan kodenya. Ada yang K, Z, T, dan D. Kelas yang paling lambat jalannya adalah K, kemudian T, Z, dan yang paling cepat adalah D. Untuk kelas D, mungkin bisa disamakan dengan Shinkansen-nya Jepang (Bullet train).

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Ini dia “D train” aka Shinkansen ala China 😀

Nah, selain pembagian kode kereta, ada juga pembagian kelas di dalam kereta. Ada hard seat (kayak di kelas ekonomi), soft seat, hard sleeper dan soft sleeper (yang ini paling pueenak!!). Berhubung saat itu adalah pas liburan musim panas, banyak orang Beijing yang mudik ke Wuhan. Alhamdulillah, aku masih beruntung bisa mendapatkan tiket soft seat di saat peak season ini.

Perjalanan ke Wuhan dimulai dengan perjuangan ke Beijing East Railway Station ato Stasiun Kereta Beijing Barat (Beijing Xi Zhan). Berhubung China sangat luas dan banyak penduduknya, maka stasiun kereta dibagi-bagi sesuai arah tujuannya. Ada stasiun Beijing Barat, Timur, Selatan dan Beijing Pusat. Karena Hubei Province letaknya di barat daya Beijing, maka stasiun keretanya adalah yang Beijing Barat.

PS: Untuk foto-foto perjalanan ke Wuhan, please:

WORLD EXPO SHANGHAI 2010

Pengen!! Pengen!! Pengen mengunjungi perhelatan akbar ini ^_____^!!


Beritanya diambil dari :

http://cetak.kompas.com/read/xml/2010/05/02/03343267/meningkatkan.rasa.saling.pengertian


Meningkatkan Rasa Saling Pengertian

Minggu, 2 Mei 2010 | 03:34 WIB

Pada tanggal 30 April 2010, World Expo Shanghai 2010 dibuka dengan resmi oleh Presiden China Hu Jintao dan berlangsung hingga tanggal 31 Oktober mendatang. Bintang film terkenal Jackie Chan bergabung dengan ribuan tamu, termasuk 20 pemimpin dunia, dalam acara pembukaan yang sangat megah itu.

Dari segi luas area, World Expo Shanghai 2010 sangat mencengangkan. Bagaimana tidak, World Expo Shanghai 2010 yang diikuti oleh lebih dari 200 negara dan organisasi internasional itu diadakan di area seluas 528 hektar (5,28 kilometer persegi) atau dua kali lipat luas wilayah negara Monako. Bukan itu saja, World Expo Shanghai 2010 yang berlangsung selama enam bulan itu diharapkan akan dikunjungi oleh 70 juta pengunjung, termasuk 5 juta pengunjung dari luar negeri.

Perkiraan pengunjung sebanyak 70 juta orang itu didasarkan pada perhitungan bahwa setiap hari sebanyak 400.000- 600.000 orang akan datang ke World Expo Shanghai 2010. Tiket masuk akan dijual dengan dua versi harga, yakni 160 yuan (Rp 212.800) pada hari biasa dan 200 yuan (Rp 266.000) pada akhir pekan atau pada saat pengunjung sangat padat. Sampai awal Maret, lebih dari 22 juta tiket masuk telah terjual.

Dalam kaitan itulah, pada World Expo Shanghai 2010, sedikitnya 70.000 tenaga sukarela akan membantu di dalam arena Expo dan 100.000 tenaga sukarela lainnya akan bekerja di lebih dari 1.000 pusat layanan di berbagai bagian kota Shanghai.

Total biaya yang dikeluarkan untuk penyelenggaraan World Expo Shanghai 2010 itu 28,6 miliar yuan (Rp 38 triliun). Namun, tidak semua biaya ditanggung Pemerintah China, bantuan dana juga diperoleh dari para sponsor, antara lain, GM and Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation, China National Petroleum Corporation, Siemens, Coca-Cola, dan China Eastern Airlines.

World Expo Shanghai 2010 bukanlah proyek mercu suar atau proyek yang hanya menghambur-hamburkan uang. Melalui World Expo Shanghai 2010, China dapat menunjukkan kepada dunia mengenai potensi dan sekaligus kemampuan yang dimilikinya.

Dengan datang ke Shanghai dan mengunjungi World Expo Shanghai 2010, orang akan memiliki gambaran yang utuh tentang China. Negara yang berpendudukan paling banyak di dunia itu bukan hanya pasar yang sangat potensial, tetapi juga menyediakan infrastruktur yang lengkap, tertata dengan baik, dan memiliki kepedulian yang sangat tinggi kepada kelestarian lingkungan. Dengan kata lain, melalui World Expo Shanghai, China antara lain ingin menunjukkan kepada dunia bahwa negara itu sangat atraktif sebagai daerah tujuan investasi.

Sama seperti Expo Osaka pada tahun 1970 yang mengawali kebangkitan Jepang sebagai kekuatan ekonomi dunia, World Expo Shanghai 2010 juga akan mengawali kebangkitan China sebagai kekuatan ekonomi dunia.

Pemerintah China menangani World Expo Shanghai 2010 sama seperti pada waktu menangani Olimpiade Beijing 2008. Itu sebabnya Pemerintah China menyediakan press center (pusat pers) untuk melayani keperluan pers dari seluruh dunia selama 24 jam.

Bukan hanya untuk China

Menurut Wakil Menteri Perdagangan China Yi Xiaozhun, World Expo Shanghai 2010 tidak hanya bermanfaat bagi China, negara-negara lain pun, termasuk juga Indonesia, dapat menggunakan paviliunnya di World Expo Shanghai 2010 untuk menunjukkan kepada dunia tentang potensi dan sekaligus kemampuan yang dimiliki. Mengingat sampai dengan tanggal 5 Januari lalu, tercatat ada 242 negara dan organisasi internasional akan hadir di World Expo Shanghai 2010.

Amerika Serikat (AS) pun melihat arti penting World Expo Shanghai 2010. AS pada awalnya mengatakan tidak dapat bergabung karena tengah dilanda krisis keuangan. Namun, kemudian Menteri Luar Negeri AS Hillary Clinton menyatakan sudah menyiapkan dana untuk berpartisipasi.

Denmark juga menganggap kehadirannya di World Expo Shanghai 2010 sangat penting. Denmark memboyong patung Little Mermaid, yang sangat terkenal, ke sana. Untuk pertama kalinya, patung itu dibawa keluar dari Kopenhagen.

Indonesia pun menangkap arti penting World Expo Shanghai. Mengingat dengan menarik sebanyak mungkin orang untuk mendatangi paviliun Indonesia, melalui pertunjukan kesenian dan kebudayaan, semakin banyak orang yang mengetahui potensi dan sekaligus kemampuan yang dimiliki oleh Indonesia.

Selain menjadi pusat kesenian dan kebudayaan, paviliun Indonesia juga harus dikembangkan menjadi pusat informasi tentang potensi dan kemampuan yang dimiliki Indonesia dalam bidang ekonomi atau tentang tawaran apa yang diajukan Indonesia sebagai negara tujuan investasi. Dalam kaitan itulah, Menko Bidang Perekonomian Hatta Rajasa dan Menteri Perdagangan Mari Pangestu hadir dalam acara pembukaan World Expo Shanghai 2010.

Komitmen China sebagai negara yang sangat peduli akan kelestarian lingkungan sangat terasa dalam berbagai aspek di World Expo Shanghai 2010. Mulai dari desain paviliun yang ekologis, pengendalian polusi, konstruksi yang ramah lingkungan (hijau), manajemen yang hijau, dan moda transportasi yang hijau.

Saling pengertian

World Expo Shanghai 2010 bukan hanya merupakan pameran arsitektur, inovasi teknik, dan ajang promosi tentang potensi dan kemampuan yang dimiliki negara, melainkan juga arena pertunjukan tari-tarian dan kesenian. Dengan kata lain, World Expo Shanghai 2010 mempererat hubungan di antara manusia serta menjadi ajang bagi pertukaran ide dan pendapat. Semua itu akan membuka peluang emas bagi para peserta expo dan pengunjungnya untuk meningkatkan rasa saling pengertian dan kepercayaan di antara mereka.

Itu sebabnya, melihat potensinya, World Expo Shanghai 2010 terlalu penting untuk dilewatkan begitu saja.

Menangani urbanisasi

Jika melihat bagaimana Pemerintah China mengembangkan kota Shanghai, terutama wilayah Pudong di mana World Expo Shanghai 2010 berlokasi, banyak negara dapat belajar tentang bagaimana menangani atau lebih tepat mengendalikan urbanisasi.

Nguyen Vinh Quang, Wakil Duta Besar Vietnam untuk China, dalam ceramahnya di depan para wartawan ASEAN + 3, pekan lalu, mengatakan, Vietnam dan juga negara lain dapat belajar dari China tentang bagaimana cara mengendalikan urbanisasi.

Pemerintah China berhasil menata ulang kota Shanghai menjadi kota yang tertata rapi sesuai peruntukan, jumlah penduduk yang terkendali, dan hijau. Wilayah yang kini dijadikan lokasi World Expo Shanghai 2010 di jantung kota Shanghai itu sebelumnya adalah zona industri. Beberapa pabrik terkemuka China pada abad ke-19 dan abad ke-20, termasuk perusahaan galangan kapal Jiangnan, perusahaan baja Pudong Shanghai, dan pembangkit listrik Nanshi berlokasi di sana. Perusahaan-perusahaan itu merupakan penyumbang polusi terbesar terhadap lingkungan sekitarnya.

Untuk mempersiapkan World Expo Shanghai 2010, 272 perusahaan memindahkan usahanya. Demikian juga, pekerjanya yang tinggal dengan 18.000 rumah tangga di sekitar pabrik- pabrik tersebut dalam keadaan sangat miskin. Mereka dimukimkan kembali di wilayah baru atau diberikan ganti rugi yang memadai.

Di banyak negara, urbanisasi yang berlangsung demikian cepat seiring dengan pembangunan dan modernisasi mengakibatkan pemerintah negara yang bersangkutan tidak dapat mengimbanginya dengan menyediakan infrastruktur yang memadai, seperti transportasi dan perumahan.

China, menurut Nguyen Vinh Quang, mengendalikan urbanisasi dengan baik. Itu sesuatu hal yang dapat ditiru oleh negara- negara lain. Dalam kaitan itulah, ia menilai tema World Expo Shanghai 2010 sangat tepat, â?Better City, Better Lifeâ? (Kota yang Lebih Baik, Kehidupan yang Lebih Baik). (JL)

The First Emperor : The Man Who Made China

Category: Movies
Genre: Documentary
Inget kah dengan pelajaran sejarah dunia pas zaman SMP or SMA? Ketika menginjak bab Peradaban China, pasti pernah denger tentang Dinasti Qin (mbacane : Chin), dengan kaisar pertamanya bernama Shi Huang Di (ato sering dengernya Shih huang ti).

Aye seneng banget dengan film-film dokumenter tentang peradaban kuno. Bahkan waktu kecil, aye pernah bercita-cita jadi arkeolog di tempat-tempat kuno dunia. wekekekk…

Lanjut lagi cerita tentang filmnya. Nah, film dokumenter yang berdurasi sekitar 90 menit ini, bercerita tentang kisahnya sang Kaisar mulai dari ia naik tahta (umur 15 taon) hingga wafat dalam umur 50 taon (pada 210 BC). Ia disebut sebut sebagai kaisar pertama China karena di bawah pemerintahannya lah, kerajaan Qin (Chin) yang semula hanya wilayah kecil kemudian bisa menjadi besar dengan menaklukan 7 wilayah kerajaan lainnya. Dan kesemua wilayah itu dipersatukan. Dan jadilah Dinasti Qin (wilayah Qin –> Chin –> China).

Dari film ini, didapat pula pengetahuan lain tentang "karya besar China" yaitu pembangunan Great Wall dan Makam raja terbesar di dunia (musoleum) yang dilengkapi dengan ribuan "Terracotta Army", yang ada di Xi’an.

(Info lebih lanjut tentang Dinasti Qin, bisa baca di tautan :
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qin_Dynasty)

Wah…Kayaknya kalo isi filmnya diceritain smua, malah jadi nggak seru nontonnya. Wekekekk.. Jadi, kepada para peminat film dokumenter, guru sejarah (bagus untuk media pengajaran nih, Pak & Bu!), mahasiswa sejarah, penyuka china, travel, etc (smuanya dah), selamat menonton!

è¿ä¸ªçµå½±ççå¾å¥½çä¹å¾ææ?æ?!

Zhège dià nyÇ?ng zhÄn de hÄn hÇokà n yÄ hÄn yÇuyìsi!

This movie is really good to see and very interesting :D!

(film ini bener-bener bagus en menarik loh!)

Ip Man (C-Movie)

Category: Movies
Genre: Action & Adventure
Berawal dari rekomendasi seorang teman, saya mencari torrent film ini dan men-downloadnya. Saya kira filmnya biasa-biasa aja, maksudnya seperti film kebanyakan yang "non-sense". Tapi, after I watched it, SUGOI!! VERY COOL!! Ampe nangis saking terharunya…..hu..hu….

Ceritanya diangkat dari kisah nyata tentang seorang ahli kung-fu di China yang berjuang melawan tentara pendudukan Jepang (masa perang Sino-Japan II tahun 1930-an).

Dari film ini, tidak hanya sisi sejarah saja yang diangkat (okupasi Jepang di China), tetapi juga digambarkan secara apik berbagai jurus kungfu yang mantaps ^o^/! Kya…kya…(nge-fans abis ama martial arts China yang satu ini. he..he…). Terlebih saya jadi bisa skalian latihan mandarin. hoo..ho…

Ternyata eh ternyata, di akhir film saya baru tahu bahwasanya Wing Chun (Ip Man) yang jadi tokoh sentral film ini merupakan guru dari Bruce Lee!

Wa…wa…Bruce Lee yang jadi legenda film China dengan berbagai aksi kungfunya itu ! (bahkan, karakternya ampe ditiru tokoh anime Naruto lho ^o^)

Sekilas tentang Islam di China

copas dari : http://id.88db.com/id/Services/Post_Detail.page/Tour-Travel/Agency-Ticketing/?PostID=196986

Islam masuk ke China melalui jalur darat dan laut di pertengahan abad ke-7 atau tepatnya sejak utusan kerajaan Osman dari negeri Arab pada tahun 651 memulai hubungan perdagangan dengan China dan Islam. Jalur perdagangan menuju China dari negara-negara Arab dan Persia baik yang melalui darat maupun laut dikenal dengan sebutan âJalur Sutraâ?, dan sejalan dengan berkembangnya hubungan antara Barat dan Timur maka para pedagang Arab dan Persia mulai berdatangan ke China. Kemudian berkembang arus imigran muslim dari Timur Tengah, banyak pula yang menetap dan berdomisili di China, mereka membangun masjid, menyebarkan ajaran Islam termasuk menikah dengan penduduk lokal sehingga membentuk komunitas yang unik.

Hubungan kenegaraan antara dunia Arab dengan China sendiri telah terjalin sejak lama, dimana kemudian di jaman pemerintahan Dinasti Ming (1371-1435) salah seorang muslim sejati yang bernama Zheng He atau yang terkenal dengan sebutan Cheng Ho sebagai laksamana telah memimpin 7 armada pelayaran di dalam misi diplomatiknya ke negara yang meliputi Asia, Afrika dan Arab termasuk kota suci Mekkah pada tahun 1405-1533.

Masjid-masjid yang memiliki nilai sejarah yang ada di China dan menarik untuk dikunjungi antara lain : Niujie Masjid (996) di Beijing, Songjiang Masjid (1368) di Shanghai, Huaisheng Masjid (627) di Guangzhou dan âThe Great Masjidâ (742) di Xian. Selain masjid-masjid ini telah berumur sangat tua, namun sangat indah karena memiliki perpaduan arsitektur Arab dan China yang sangat menakjubkan baik interior maupun eksteriornya. Masjid-masjid ini juga menyimpan sejarah dan peninggalan-peninggalan Islam yang berumur ratusan tahun, seperti Al-Qurâan, hadist-hadist, dan manuskrip-manuskrip Islam yan dibuat dalam berbagai versi.

Cerita Wang Yan dan Haji Ma Ibrahim

Merebaknya kasus kekerasan terhadap kelompok minoritas muslim di China akhir-akhir ini semakin membuatku ingin mempelajari, meneliti, menelaah, dan pergi ke CHINA sana untuk mengetahui peristiwa ini secara langsung. Entah kapan rezeki dan kesempatan itu datang…InsyaAllah ^__^! Jia you ba ~

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taken from : http://internasional.kompas.com/read/xml/2009/07/12/06215749/cerita.wang.yan.dan.haji.ma.ibrahim

Cerita Wang Yan dan Haji Ma Ibrahim



Oleh : Jimmy S Harianto

KOMPAS.com â Ketika seorang gadis remaja China berjilbab berkelebat masuk gerbang Masjid Huaisheng di Guangzhou selepas dzuhur, pertengahan Juni 2009, kami pun lalu menggamitnya. Gadis berparas polos itu pun tersipu-sipu malu.

"Wang Yan," kata remaja usia 17 tahun yang mengaku masih duduk di bangku sekolah menengah di Guangzhou itu. Wang Yan adalah anak ke-4 dari lima bersaudara di keluarganya, empat di antara mereka perempuan.

â?Semuanya Muslim,â? katanya ketika ditanya, apakah kakak, adik, dan juga kedua orangtuanya juga pemeluk agama Islam.

Selama perjalanan, kami lebih dari sepekan, dari Beijing di China utara lalu ke Chongqing di China barat, lalu ke Guangzhou dan Senzhen di selatan, memang sangat jarang berpapasan dengan perempuan Chinaâapalagi remajaâmengenakan jilbab. Kecuali di sekitar masjid, seperti yang bisa Anda jumpai di masjid besar Niujie, masjid terbesar di Beijing. Atau di Masjid Huaisheng Guangzhou. Itu pun boleh dikata tak banyak jumlahnya (di China ada sekitar 40.000 masjid).

Maka, tak perlu heran jika teman-teman wartawan Indonesia, begitu melihat Wang Yan siang itu, langsung menggamitnya untuk berfoto. Wang Yan pun tersipu ketika wajah cantiknya dipotret di gerbang Masjid Huaisheng, salah satu masjid tertua di dunia yang bangunan induk dan minaretnya sudah berusia lebih dari 1.300 tahun di Guangzhou, China selatan.

â?Kami turun-temurun keluarga Muslim,â? ungkap Haji Ma Ibrahim, 73 tahun, imam masjid dan mantan Ketua Asosiasi Muslim China, yang juga ditemui di kompleks Masjid Huaisheng siang itu. Kata â?Maâ? memang mengunjuk bahwa si penyandang nama adalah seorang China Muslim. Mungkin seperti halnya nama depan Muhammad di Indonesia.

Ketika tahu kami dari Indonesia, Haji Ma Ibrahim yang aslinya bernama Ma Yu Jun ini pun berbinar-binar dan tak ragu mengucapkan salamnya. â?Assalamualaikum…,â? sapanya. Indonesia di matanya adalah â?negara Islamâ? (meski sebenarnya, negara dengan penduduk Islam terbesar di dunia) yang tak asing baginya.

â?Saya pernah ke Indonesia, diundang ke rumah Habibie (waktu itu presiden), tahun 1998,â? tutur Haji Ma Ibrahim. Tak hanya itu. Bahkan, mendiang presiden pertama RI, Soekarno, pun ia pernah menemuinya.

â?Soekarno 50 tahun lalu juga ke China, menemui Mao Zhedong (mereka selalu menyebut Mao sebagai âSang Ketua Maoâ atau dalam bahasa Inggrisnya âChairman Maoâ, Mao sang pemimpin tertinggi partai), saya waktu itu juru masaknya,â? tutur Haji Ibrahim.

Meski sudah turun-temurun menjadi pemeluk agama Islam, Ma Yu Jun mengaku baru berkesempatan menunaikan ibadah haji pada masa tuanya, tahun 2005 silam.

Sehari-hari Haji Ma Ibrahim adalah anggota Dewan Provinsi Guangdong yang tugasnya â?memberikan rekomendasi kepada restoran-restoran Muslim di provinsiâ? apakah mereka restoran makanan halal atau tidak.

Kemudian, lantaran ia imam masjid di Huaisheng, ia pun boleh dikata setiap hari ke masjid di sela-sela pertokoan padat di Guangzhou itu.

Kaum minoritas

Wang Yan dan Haji Ma Ibrahim hanyalah sekelumit contoh wajah terkini warga minoritas China yang kebetulan pemeluk Islam. Dari ciri-ciri penampilan luarnyaâWang Yan berjilbab dan Haji Ma Yu Jun berjanggut dan kopiah putihâ kentara terlihat bahwa mereka di China pemeluk agama Islam.

Sangat kontras penampilannya jika Anda melihat betapa di jalanan kota-kota besar China saat ini lebih banyak warga berpenampilan modern. Tak beda dengan Jakarta, Hongkong, dan bahkan New York. Rambut gaya â?harajukuâ? warna-warni atau perempuan seksi dengan
tank-top
pun berkeliaran di mana-mana.

Berbeda dengan China pada tahun 1980-an ketika lelakinya masih terlihat memakai pakaian â?wajibâ? masa Sun Yat-sen, pakaian
zhongshan
, sementara perempuannya pakai
qipao
dengan celana panjang. Begitu zadul alias zaman dulu.

Jumlah pemeluk agama Islam di Chinaâmeski menurut catatan resmiâada sekitar 20 juta jiwa. Akan tetapi, jika dibandingkan dengan jumlah keseluruhan penduduk China yang 1,33 miliar jiwa, mereka masih tergolong minoritas.

Secara kebetulan, pemeluk agama Islam di China saat ini umumnya adalah warga kelompok-kelompok etnis minoritas. Meski sebenarnya Islam sudah mulai masuk ke China pada pertengahan abad ke-7 atau sekitar 1300 tahun silam.

Dengan segala keterbatasannya, agama Islam di China mampu menembus berbagai zaman, dari masa pemerintahan Dinasti Tang (651 M), Song, Yang, Ming, dan Dinasti Qing. Juga tetap bertahan pada masa China menjadi republik yang berhaluan komunis pada tahun 1949 dengan segala bentuk perubahannya. Sampai sekarang.

Nama Islam pun berubah-ubah. Pernah dinamai sebagai Agama Arab (Dashi Jiao atau Tianfang Jiao) pada masa Dinasti Ming (1368-1644). Juga pernah disebut Hui Hui Jiao, atau agamanya orang Hui Hui.

Pernah disebut sebagai â?agama sejatiâ? pada masa Dinasti Qing (1616-1911) sebagai Qingzhen Jiao, dan pada masa â?Republik Pertamaâ? (1912-1949) kembali disebut sebagai â?agamanya etnis Huiâ? atau Hui Jiao.

Namun, sejak 1956 atau sepuluh tahun sebelum Revolusi Kebudayaan yang dipimpin Chairman Mao, melalui sebuah keputusan Dewan Negara tahun 1956, Dashi Jiao, Tianfang Jiao, atau Hui Jiao ini di China resmi disebut sebagai agama Islam.

Sampai saat ini, di antara total sekitar 56 kelompok etnis besar di China, ada 10 etnis di antaranya yang dikenal sebagai pemeluk agama Islam. Mereka adalah etnis Huis, Uighur (yang kini terlibat pergolakan berdarah dengan kaum keturunan Han di Provinsi Xinjiang di China barat), Kazak, Dongxiang, Khalkha, Salas, Tajik, Uzbek, Baoâan, dan kelompok etnis minoritas Tartar.

Selain tetap dilestarikan oleh Pemerintah China, etnis-etnis minoritas ini juga diberi privilese yang tak dimiliki etnis mayoritas lainnya, yakni tak diwajibkan mengikuti peraturan
one child policy (hanya boleh satu anak di keluarga) yang diberlakukan di seluruh China sejak 1979, kecuali di daerah otonomi khusus Hongkong dan Makau.

Selain warga dua daerah khusus itu dan juga warga etnis minoritas seperti halnya kelompok minoritas etnis Islam tadi, warga China hanya boleh beranak satu. Kalau beranak lebih dari satu, mereka akan kena berbagai sanksiâdi antaranya denda senilai ribuan yuan (jutaan rupiah)âdan akan mendapat berbagai kesulitan lain.

Kekecualian lain, bagi anak yang kedua orangtuanya adalah anak tunggal, mereka boleh beranak dua. Atau, jika kawin dengan anak yang orangtuanya anak tunggal pula, pasangan ini boleh beranak dua.

Jumlah penduduk China yang 1,3 miliar inilah menjadi alasan utamanya kenapa satu keluarga China harus hanya punya anak satu. Demi keluarga berencana.

Ideologi? Mereka akan geleng kepala kalau ditanya, â?Ideologimu apa.â? Komunis? Mereka akan bilang, dengan segala penampilan modern mereka, â?Apakah aku tampak seperti komunis?â?

Stabilitas adalah â?ideologiâ? negara yang harus mereka junjung, tak hanya dengan sekadar kata-kata. Maka, jika ada yang dinilai â?merongrong stabilitasâ?, melakukan aksi kerusuhan yang menggoyang ketenteraman, seperti terjadi di Urumqi: pertarungan etnis antara minoritas Uighur dan mayoritas Han, serta makan korban 184 jiwa?

Hanya ada satu kata yang diluncurkan aparat negara, libas perusuh, apa pun alasannya.