East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society

Mar 18 Workshop


East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society Presents


 “Criminalizing the Muslim Violence as seen in the Legal Cases of Qing China, 1760 to 1830”


Geng Tian

PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology

University of Chicago


4-5:30pm, Wednesday

March 18, 2015

Social Sciences 302

**Note the unusual meeting time and location**



From late 18th century to early 19th century, the Qing state Empire (re. 1644 -1911) by various criminal legislatures selected out Muslims living in the interior provinces as a particular category of subjects who were to receive harsher punishments for conducing armed collective violence. Currently, many scholars have thought such a way of criminalizing collective violence done by Muslim subjects reflect the increasing disadvantaging or discrimination of the Muslims during that period. While these thoughts rightly point out the existence of discrimination of Muslims in political and social life, they have difficulty in explaining either the contents of those particular legislatures or the evolution of the criminalization in the documented period. In view of the two explanatory loopholes, I thus suggest an alternative account of the criminalization of Muslim violence by replacing those particular legislatures and adjudications based on them into the broader context of the Qing’s legal regulation of collective violence. This regulation consisted in legalizing harsher punishments over criminals who were either from certain social groups or conducted the crime in specific regions of strong mores towards popular violence. I argue that such a general practice of criminalizing violence formed the basis of an imperial, legal mindset which were irreducible to the idea of ethnic discrimination in the Qing’s legal regime over the Muslim subjects.


Workshop website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia/

Student coordinator: Wen Xie (wxie@uchicago.edu)

Faculty sponsors: Dali Yang, Dingxin Zhao and Zheng Michael Song


This presentation is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences and Center for East Asian Studies. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

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