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Beyond BordersStories of Yunnanese Chinese Migrants of Burma$
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Wen-Chin Chang

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780801453311

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801453311.001.0001

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Islamic Transnationalism

Islamic Transnationalism

Yunnanese Muslims

(p.114) 4 Islamic Transnationalism
Beyond Borders

Wen-Chin Chang

Cornell University Press

This chapter focuses on the migration history of contemporary Yunnanese Muslims in Burma and their Islamic transnationalism. The narrators relate their marginality in Burma, owing to both their ethnicity and their religion, and talk about how they deal with social and religious discrimination through Islamic networking beyond Burma. The narrators, who are located in both Burma and Taiwan, employ various motifs and strategies to overcome obstacles and adversities in order to reach their goals. Moreover, they thread together two common themes referred to by James Clifford—“roots” and “routes”—to portray how they understand their life trajectories in relation to time, localities, peoples, and their multiple roles or positions. The chapter examines the elements that connect diasporic Yunnanese Muslims across a wide range of places and distinguish them from Yunnanese Han and other Muslim groups. It shows that their connection to Islam and their Chinese identity help strengthen Yunnanese Muslims' communal and transnational Hui networks and also underscore their ethnic boundary vis-à-vis other Muslim groups.

Keywords:   migration, Yunnanese Muslims, Burma, Islam, transnationalism, discrimination, Taiwan, Yunnanese Han, Chinese identity, Islamic networking

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