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The Uyghur Shaoguan Incident (June 25, 2009)

June 25 | 11 Comments

On this day one year ago riot police were called into a toy factory in Guangdong to break up a brawl between Han and Uyghur workers. By the time calm had been restored 2 Uyghur had died and over 100 other people were injured.

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Etimology of the Name “Xinjiang”?

May 5 | 86 Comments

What would you think if I told you that parts of Yunan and Sichuan used to be called “Xinjiang”? According to the Chinese history article I’ve translated below, the Xinjiang region is one of 5 regions that have used the name “New Frontier”. This short article was written as a propaganda piece following the Urumqi riots, which make it an even more interesting read:

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Discussion: Language in Xinjiang Education, Uyghur or Mandarin?

April 14 | 103 Comments

Ever since reading Blaine Kaltman’s Under the Heel of the Dragon, my views about language in education have been challenged. At this moment in the Xinjiang city of Karamay, there is only one Uyghur-language high school and judging from the rumors I’ve heard recently they may soon switch to Mandarin. Why is that?  Or rather, […]

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Under the Heel of the Dragon | Book Review

April 6 | 24 Comments

More than four years before the deadly riots in Urumqi, an American named Blaine Kaltman working on his PhD thesis, traveled all over China interviewing Uyghur and Han alike to find out the answer to one simple question: are you guys ever going to get along?

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Foreign Devils on the Silk Road: Book Review

March 2 | 2 Comments

The Silk Road has become to Xinjiang as the Great Wall is to China. The first foreigners to cross this important set of trade routes were kindly referred to as merchants but around the turn of the century another group of foreigners would step foot here and be labeled devils.

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The TRUTH about Xinjiang’s Internet Situation

December 6 | 6 Comments

How much information is really getting into and out of Xinjiang? Is the internet completely cut or just partially? If so, how am I updating this blog while still living in Xinjiang? And the question on everybody’s mind who has any concern about Xinjiang: when will they turn the internet back on?

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Life in Xinjiang after 7.5 (Urumqi Riots)

October 19 | 1 Comment

How did the Urumqi riots of 2009 change the way people lived in Xinjiang, China? During the months that followed the riots, quite a few newsworthy events continued to shape life in Xinjiang, including the syringe scare and the outbreak of H1N1. As always, keep in mind that this all comes from personal observation and […]

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A History of Unrest in Xinjiang (prior to 2009)

August 5 | 2 Comments

Xinjiang, in both recent and ancient history, has never been known as a haven of peace and tranquility. Murders and coups of the past have now been replaced by riots and what the Chinese call “splittism” (the desire to separate the country). Here’s a quick look at the riots and unrest that have occurred in […]

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Water in the Barren Xinjiang Desert

July 7 | No Comments

I’d like to introduce you to one of the most popular buildings in Karamay, a small city of only 200,000 people here in Xinjiang. It represents the only place of worship that is not only accepted by the local government but also boasts a large membership from their ranks.

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Xinjiang Crippled by Urumqi Riots; Curfew Set (July 5, 2009)

July 5 | 4 Comments

On Sunday, July 5th at around 9:30pm Beijing time, a riot began which has crippled Urumqi, the capital of China’s Xinjiang province. As with any such event here in China, reports are sketchy and numbers vary drastically. Misleading photos and estimations are already circulating all over the web.  Reliable details won’t be available for at […]

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