Views: 12472|Replies: 24

On the unique Chinese experience of acculturating their conquerors [Copy link] 中文

Rank: 8Rank: 8

Post time 2004-3-27 08:40:04 |Display all floors
What indeed is the reason behind the acculturation of nomadic conquerors by their Chinese subjects, and how does this process extend to Western cultures in the world today?

Western culture is replete with examples of "qi shan par uh." Which translates to "they will trounce on the meek and respect only strength."

Chinese culture is not like this, as is reflected in the way we treated minorities all through the ages.

The proof is in the historical fact that even the Jews, the people equally non-susceptible to assimilation as the Chinese, went to Kaifeng in the Sung Dynasty (960-1279 A.D.) and was totally assimilated by the Han Chinese. The Manchus, who were so xenophobic as to the point of forbidding intermarriage between Hans and Manchus, were by and large assimilated by the end of the Ching Dynasty (1644-1911 A.D.)

So were the Mongols, the most racist of all minorities, who relegated their conquered Chinese subjects north of Changjian (The Long River) as Northern Chinese, Third Class Citizens, and the Chinese south of that mighty river as Southern Chinese (Nanren), Fourth Class Citizens. The Chinese under the Mongols suffered racial discrimination on their own land. After 89 years, in 1368, all the Mongols were driven back to their steppe and desert lands north of the Great Wall. The ones who stayed behind were again totally assimilated.

Numbers alone would not have been sufficient to explain this phenomenon of Han Chinese assimilating foes who conquered them in war, only to find that in due course, it was the conquerors who were totally assimilated.

Whether it was the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Egyptians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Arab Moors, the Turks, or the Europeans after 1500, there had been numerous instances of cultural dominance of the minority over the majority. Even in India, a nation that boasts a population of nearly a billion as of 2001, second only to China's, uses English as their official national language. The major paper in New Delhi is the India Times --- in English, of course.

If number is the decisive factor for the total assimilation of minorities by the majority, why were the English not assimilated by the Indians after two hundred years of colonialism, and why were the Spaniards not assimilated by the far greater number of indigenous peoples in the Americas?

The major reason is that Han Chinese do not cherish racial discrimination, which again is due to the absence of monotheism in Chinese culture. <b>There has never been one single religious war in China in its 5000 years of recorded history.</b> Uprisings from hungry peasants who took up religious facades were not revolting in the tradition of a Islamic Jihad or a Christian crusade.

For instance, 'Yellow Turbans' and 'Red Eyebrows' at the end of Eastern Han Dynasty and the White Lotus rebels in Qing Dynasty were peasants masquerading themselves as Sectarian enthusiasts of Daoism, and not religious fanatics <i>per se</i>.

In a sense, this explains why the Chinese government cracked down on the Felon Goons because they know the cult's main thrust was its anti-government political agenda, all the while pretending to be a religious movement.

As another example the Jews, who came to Sung China in the Tenth Century as one tribe in their Diaspora, were totally assimilated by the Chinese at Kaifeng, capital of China at that time. This could occur only if the Jews were accepted as equals and treated with respect and not as ghetto residents in the worst portions of Kaifeng, as in the case of Warsaw before WWII.

In contrast, if you notice that in the tiny, self-important island of England, there is racial prejudice down the centuries even up to the present time. Remember the movie "Braveheart" starring Mel Gibson? Remember also the "Right of the First Night" practised by the English on the Scottish newly-wed women? No wonder they cannot assimilate people even on their own islands. Mainstream Anglo-Saxon Americans are cultural descendants of the English. How different do you expect them to behave from their forbears?

That's why all Anglo countries, i.e. all former British Commonwealth nations like Canada, Australia, New Zealand, plus the former British colony the United States of America, have this tradition of discrimination against all non-Anglo peoples.

And to realize that the English used to send their convicted crooks to Australia and North Carolina and that those are still the areas with the most racist governments and regimes in place.  Remember Jesse Helms?  He came from N. Carolina.

And for descendants of these convicts to feel superior towards the Chinese!

Such is the mockery of history.

Use magic tools Report

Rank: 4

Post time 2004-3-27 09:29:00 |Display all floors

I Like your last two posts

Yes indeed. They're very well written and are based in the succesion of facts to explain an idea.

I was born in the USA, although I was brought up in Spain. Thus I learned "easily" three languages as a child. English, our family language, Spanish the language of the country I was brought up, and Catalan, a language which is spoken in the area where we were living, Barcelona.

Later in my middle-school years I developed a will to learn other languages and so I started learning French and Italian. By the time I got to University I found myself speaking,reading and writting 5 languages. At those times I was a complete "rarity" in between my peers.

If you ask me why do I think that English is a dominant language amongst the others, I will answer that I think I know; but we must go back some centuries to "maybe" understand it.

For centuries, in all the known world(Europe, North Africa and the Mid-East) the dominant culture was the Latin one. The Roman Empire ruled with an Iron hand upon all these lands; thus the language used was Latin. The Romans had a strong army, but most important were dominant in the economy. The production, transport and distribution of olive oil, the engine of the Roman economy, was under the control of the Empire. Latin was the language used to regulate the daily life issues. An example is this; I recall reading in the Bible the trip Timothy did from Macedonia to Rome to visit Paul, and how he "recommended" to Paul to find a good lawyer with command of Latin to defend his cause in the trail against him. A really funny version of this passage of History is found also in the book from Gore Vidal, "Direct from Golgota".

Backto present days. It seems, from what we can see every day, that the economy around the world is led, mainly by American enterprises; and this seems to have been going on for nearly a century now. So it would not be surprising that, like in the roman times where if you wanted to trade with the Empire you had to use Latin, in the present times if you want to trade with the Big Ones, you might have to do it in THEIR language. With this I do not mean to say it is fair; it is the rule of the strongest. If you want to play with me.....welcome, but we will play with my rules.

What about the future? Well, if China, as it seems, becomes the leading econmy of the World, MAYBE it will not be long when we see everybody rushing to learn Chinese; not just like know that it is considered simply and "exotism" to speak or read Chinese among non-Nationals.

But once again, thanks for two wonderful articles you gave us to read about language learning. A real intelectual "dish" for those of us "gourmets" of knowledge.

Use magic tools Report

chairman has been deleted
Post time 2004-3-27 23:55:24 |Display all floors

Read the Lau Guan Kim posts to see why chairman placed wchao37 back on top.

Reminder: Author is prohibited or removed, and content is automatically blocked

Use magic tools Report

Rank: 8Rank: 8

Post time 2004-3-28 00:41:40 |Display all floors

The Singaporean must apologize for his remark on Mainland women. Evasion not al

The Singaporean must apologize for this remark. Evasion not allowed.

The impropriety of the following remark by the Singaporean is but the tip of the iceberg -- it's a Freudian slip of the true character of the man that I have come to understand during the last six years.

He characterizes prostitutes in Singapore as <b>'mainland women' </b>and as objects of derision showing the true gut feelings inside him towards the mainland people.

The inappropriate analogy is truly insulting and he has now outdone himself yet again after the Japan apology issue earlier on.

If he is not a indigenous midnight cow-retiree, how would he know so much about the girls in a red-lantern district to the extent that he was 'bothered' by them and knew where they were from?

Would you have been bothered by these unfortunate women forced into prostitution if you had not been prowling around these places drooling like an idiot with a copyrighted placard on the forehead saying:

"Girls, please make my day while my pacemaker is still working. First tell me where you are from. Regards, your cowboy"?

I tell you guys -- low ability in an ambitious man with a large ego is a dreadful combination in one individual.

I'll see what I can do. Afterall, even a pathological liar deserves a break -- in the neck (of time).

Does the guy have the basic courtesy and decency to apologize in public to all the mainland women including those who have been helping him in the administration -- for making such an outrageous remark on the unfortunate souls who had been tricked and tempted by snakeheads with prospects of getting good jobs in Singapore and then forcing them into prostitution willy-nilly?

The evidence here says the guy is trying to pretend as if nothing had happened.

Read the post:

The Singaporean said:


What is the exercise in this?

It is clear your hatred of Mr Tony Lee, the Australian, the reason for this racist post.

The event can also come to any races, not Australia alone. The way you put it, you imply Australiana are infamous for organising sex rings.

I myself have been disturbed by the great influx of mainland prostitutes in Singapore's red light district of Geylang, where Bangladeshis and Indians flock.

<b><u>Does that mean Chinese woman from mainland are whores of the world?</b></u>

Your obsession is hate and vengeance which have no place in a civilise forum.

Stop it!


The Singaporean....

......that helped to make his city notorious. Remember what our prime minister said about China during last May's SARS crisis? He's my hero, hehe.


2004-03-26 13:14  Reply    Edit   

Lau Guan Kim
+ Send message
+ Posts: 689
+ Joined:
  Reply: The Singaporean must apologize for this remark. Evasion not allowed.
For the reader’s reference:

Lau Guan Kim

2004-03-26 16:50  Reply      

+ Send message
+ Posts: 582
+ Joined:
To Singapore:

Dodging the real issue wouldn't help.

Those three links given by Singapore lead to old posts which are irrelevant.

Just face the issue in the above post.

Apologize, scumbag, not to anyone else but to <b>all mainland women</b>, including those forced or tricked into prostitution in Singapore by snakeheads!

This is no joking matter.

Use magic tools Report

chairman has been deleted
Post time 2004-3-28 06:48:19 |Display all floors

The Singaporean must apologize for his remark on Mainland women. Evasion not all

Reminder: Author is prohibited or removed, and content is automatically blocked

Use magic tools Report

chairman has been deleted
Post time 2004-3-28 23:08:52 |Display all floors

Apart from the obvious apology to be given to Chinese women............

Reminder: Author is prohibited or removed, and content is automatically blocked

Use magic tools Report

Rank: 4

Post time 2004-3-30 19:34:51 |Display all floors

My first post.

Mr. wchao37, I enjoyed reading this post very much and as I scan this forum I see much written by you, I would like to compliment you.

I am a man of few words, I mostly read, I have read this forum for some time, some many months.

I joined to say thank you to you for some very good reading material.

Maybe to also post a thought or two of my own.


Use magic tools Report

You can't reply post until you log in Log in | register

Contact us:Tel: (86)010-84883548, Email:
Blog announcement:| We reserve the right, and you authorize us, to use content, including words, photos and videos, which you provide to our blog
platform, for non-profit purposes on China Daily media, comprising newspaper, website, iPad and other social media accounts.