Tag Archives: protests

Security or Nationalism? Making Sense of Tibetan Resistance against China

Memo #247 By Tsering Topgyal – t.topgyal [at] bham.ac.uk Scholarship on the Sino-Tibetan conflict maintains a primarily binary representation of the Chinese as security-driven and the Tibetans as ethno-nationalistic. In reality, for Tibetans it is the sense of identity security or insecurity … Continue reading

Posted in China, Tibet | Tagged Chinese Communist Party, culture, ethnic unrest, exiled Tibetans, independence, political science, protests, regional autonomy, security | Leave a comment

The Politics of Mining in Mongolia and Burma/Myanmar

Protests against mining projects reveal contrasts in the political impact of resource extraction in Mongolia, an established 23 year-old democracy, and Burma/Myanmar, a liberalizing authoritarian state. Two similarities are apparent in the domestic tensions surrounding Mongolia’s Oyu Tolgoi and Burma’s Letpadaung copper mines: both governments and populations are keen to balance Chinese influence in their economies; and both struggle to balance development goals with local grievances. Yet, the differing role of the countries’ politicians means that the protests have different outcomes. Continue reading

Posted in Burma, Mongolia, Myanmar | Tagged economics, mining, politics, protests | 2 Comments

Collective Protests in China and India: Unexpected Similarity?

Collective protests against corruption and land grabs are widespread in both China and India. The official Chinese Academy of Social Sciences reported that the government spent $110 billion on containing these and related popular protests in 2011, more than the defense budget. Many argue that disruptive protests erupt because there are no effective institutional channels, such as the judiciary, for expressing grievances in China. However, in neighboring India, the world’s biggest democracy where such channels do exist, people similarly express their discontent through disruptive protests. Though not yet systematically counted, disruptions, both violent and non-violent, are an essential characteristic of Indian democracy. Continue reading

Posted in China, India | Tagged comparison, democracy, legitimacy, political regime, protests | Leave a comment

China: Two Faces of Social Protest

Memo #183 – There was a dramatic rise of social protests in China in the 1990s. Since, popular contention has become a main form of interest articulation for social groups that suffered as a result of reform era government policies. While the accommodation of social protests has contributed to authoritarian resilience in China, it has also exposed fundamental weaknesses in the Chinese political system. Continue reading

Posted in China | Tagged Chinese Communist Party, protests, social protests, stability maintenance, Weiwen (维稳) | Comments Off

Protests in China: Oppositional, or a Reflection of Faith in the System?

Memo #150 – Protests in China are often assumed to be ultimately aimed at regime change. But while protests reflect grievances, they also demonstrate faith that the state will respond to protesters’ demands. Continue reading

Posted in China | Tagged governance, human rights, protests, social protests, sociology | Comments Off

Explosive Fuel Politics in Indonesia

Memo #146 – Indonesian cities have recently witnessed a wave of protests as citizens voiced complaints against a planned fuel price hike. On March 30, 2012, students in Jakarta stormed the legislature and clashed with police. Legislators have carefully adjusted their positions to distance themselves from the hated fuel price hike. Continue reading

Posted in Indonesia, Southeast Asia | Tagged fuel, Golkar, party politics, political science, protests | Comments Off

Thailand’s Red-Shirts: One Year Later

Memo #60 – March 12, 2011 will mark the first anniversary of Thailand’s red-shirt protesters’ massive street campaign in Bangkok that ended in some of the worst political violence in modern Thai history. 91 people were killed and over 1,800 were injured in a military crackdown that resembled more of a civil war than a restoration of order. This was mainly due to the appearance of mysterious black-clad men on the side of the protesters who engaged the Thai army with automatic rifles and grenade launchers. Continue reading

Posted in Thailand | Tagged Asian Studies, March 12, protests, red shirts, Thailand conflict | Comments Off

Analyzing Falun Gong’s Effect on China since 1999

Memo #25 – More than a decade has elapsed since some 21,000 adherents of the spiritual movement known as Falun Gong gathered in peaceful protest outside Beijing’s Zhongnanhai complex. The demonstration, which came amid a rising tide of controversy over the group’s meaning and message, was China’s largest since the Tiananmen uprising of 1989. Like that incident, the Falun Gong demonstration was violently suppressed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Continue reading

Posted in China | Tagged 1999, Chinese Communist Party, Falun Gong, political science, post-Mao China, protests, Tiananmen 天安门 | Comments Off

Thai Academics Are As Polarized And Dispirited As Their Nation

Memo #1 – The recent images of the G20 protests in Toronto were disturbing. But they pale in comparison to the scale and implications of the street protests in Bangkok earlier in the summer. Continue reading

Posted in Canada, Southeast Asia, Thailand | Tagged academic debate, G20, monarchy, political science, political struggle, protests, Thailand conflict | Comments Off