Ethnic Conflict and the New Legalism in China

Adam Tyson, Xinye Wu
2016 Nationalism & Ethnic Politics  
In October 2014 the Communist Party of China committed to the establishment of a "socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics." Since then a group of Chinese political elites that we refer to as new legalists has been calling for ethnic conflict to be managed in accordance with the rule of law. This article finds that the deeply embedded and highly politicized problem of ethnic conflict in China lends credence to the legalist position that new law-based approaches are needed, although a
more » ... needed, although a number of practical problems arise when attempting to strengthen the rule of law. There are for instance powerful factions in the country supporting the continuation of repressive policies or selective ethnic preferentialism, there are relatively low levels of legal awareness in ethnic minority communities, and general inadequacies in the Chinese legal system. We argue that an elite group of new legalists in China is attempting to reshape ethnic minority policy in order to break free from the everyday protean politics of ethnic relations that is based largely on a negative cycle of violent confrontation and financial compensation. 7
doi:10.1080/13537113.2016.1239441 fatcat:u6gjn6mrlrdq7ei4mxcjnqeu2y