Yunnan is a special case, a kind of test to which the whole process of Chinese cultural and political expansion can be subjected. It could be seen as the model which further expansion would follow, if or when it becomes politically feasible; or it can be seen as the furthest probable limit of Chinese incorporation of a region formerly non-Chinese.1
—C. P. FitzGerald

1C. P. FitzGerald's statement implies that the Chinese incorporation of non-Chinese peoples in Yunnan was the sole result of Chinese imperialism; rather, I argue that both global interactions and Chinese colonialism accounted for the success of the Chinese incorporation of Yunnan.

2The contemporary geopolitical situation contrasts sharply with that of the ninth century, when Nanzhao, a powerful Yunnan-based kingdom, made a great impact on western, southwestern, and southern Chinese frontiers.2 That century, the Tubo Empire in Tibet was a rival of Tang China, and a major source of the Tang Empire's frontier troubles. Tubo even took over Chang'an, Tang China's capital, and the Nanzhao Kingdom, which sometimes allied with the Tang Dynasty, sometimes allied with Tubo. Despite its shifting allegiances, the Nanzhao army was able to defeat both the Tang and Tibetan forces. Three times the Nanzhao army plundered Chengdu, the cultural and commercial center of southwest Tang China; twice Nanzhao attacked and took over Annam, a military protectorate of Tang China in modern northern Vietnam. In addition, Nanzhao invaded various kingdoms, regimes, and city-states in mainland Southeast Asia, building its own tributary system. The political map today is dramatically different. Vietnam, now an independent and rising power, challenges and contains China in the South China Sea region. Tibet is now an administrative part of China, although its cultural differences from China and the means of its appropriation by the Chinese is still being contested. Meanwhile, Yunnan is largely accepted to be an administrative and cultural part of China.

3To ascertain the forces behind these two contrasting cultural and political maps, it is necessary to take a long-term and broader approach. Understanding how Yunnan in particular was transformed from a distinct, independent cultural and administrative entity into a frontier province of China over the course of 2,000 years can yield significant findings for Chinese history, Asian history, and, indeed, world history.

4 alt textMap 1.1 Yunnan in the World In the study of ancient Chinese history, a disproportionate amount of attention and value has been given to North China, rendering South China and its residents comparatively marginal, uncivilized or primitive, especially where ethnic frontier areas are concerned. In his path-breaking monograph The Rise of the West, William McNeill remarks upon the northern expansion of a lower Mekong-based kingdom, but ignores Nanzhao, a great Southeast Asian empire, and its considerable influence to the south.3 While it can be argued that McNeill, not a specialist of Chinese studies, was probably unaware of Nanzhao's prominence, much more serious is the ignorance displayed in The Cambridge History of China, which largely overlooks the Nanzhao and Dali kingdoms during the Tang-Song period, and by devoting ample space to northern non-Chinese regimes—Khitan Liao, Tangut Xixia, Juren Jin, and Mongolian Yuan—makes clear its northern bias.4 Scholars in China have made a similar mistake. For example, Zhongguo Lishi Nianbiao (Chronology of Chinese history), a widely accepted reference handbook for scholars, students, and lay people, lists the Liao, Xixia, Jin, and Mongol kingdoms, but ignores Nanzhao and Dali,5 although it makes the rather Sinocentric claim that Yunnan has been part of China since the Qin-Han era (second century BCE–third century AD).

5The significance of these southern peoples and states to the ascendancy of Chinese civilization is only just being understood. Recent archaeological findings in South China are helping form the basis for a theory of the plural origins of Chinese civilization. Recent discoveries of advanced bronze culture of the Sanxingdui relics near Chengdu (Sichuan) and the Xin'gan relics in Jiangxi, for example, are distinct from the Shang bronzes in the Central Plain, while they retain intimate ties with the Shang culture, whose bronze sources were mainly from the south.

6South China and the southern kingdoms were crucial to the development of imperial China as well, especially in terms of ethnic interactions and imperial administration. Southern kingdoms had actively participated in Chinese imperial building from the Eastern Zhou period. Their importance became evident in the Tang-Song period, when China's center shifted from the Yellow River to the Yangzi River. Making a parallel scholarly shift, from a Northern perspective to a Southern, specifically Yunnanese one, opens up a more nuanced, full view of Chinese history, culture, and identity than has traditionally been seen by scholars.6

7In looking at China's recent past, scholars have favored eastern China or coastal areas, partly because of their evident clashes with, and dynamic responses to, Western colonial challenges since the Opium War (1839–1842). Nonetheless, some scholars have begun to realize that a study of western China and other marginalized inland areas is crucial for drawing a comprehensive picture of modern China.7 It may be said that western China contributed to modern China as much as eastern China, and that it continues to play a decisive role in today's modernization efforts. The recent "Go West" fever, designed and spread by the Chinese state, reflects an official belief in the potential importance of the western regions to China's sustainable-development initiatives.8

8In contemporary China, ethnic tensions and struggles in Chinese peripheries or frontier areas such as Tibet and Xinjiang have always garnered much international attention. Comparatively little attention has been paid to Yunnan's success in being a relatively harmonious home to twenty-five officially-assigned ethnicities (minzu). The dramatic juxtaposition between Yunnan and Tibet, the two neighbors that once helmed great cultures and empires and that presently symbolize, on the one hand, China's success, stability, and unity and, on the other hand, its weakness, turmoil, and disunity, provoke several questions: How has Yunnan been transformed in the long-term? How does the view of Yunnan as a colonial subject help us understand China as a growing empire? And what light does the story of Yunnan throw on the mechanisms, institutions, and core-periphery relationships both in imperial and in modern China?

9This study challenges the ethnocentric approach of mainstream Chinese scholars who usually examine Chinese frontiers and indigenous peoples from a Han perspective. Almost all Chinese histories of frontier regions or ethnic groups are written in a similar fashion: the Chinese arrived, the Chinese conquered, and the Chinese civilized. Such a perspective assumes the superiority of Chinese culture, an idea that is so well entrenched that eliminating its influence and complicating its biased, simple portrait will take a long time. A typical portrait of the Chinese civilizing mission describes the Communist civilizing project in Yunnan as bringing the liberation of minorities from "the dark, old society." With such distortions, the Chinese state perpetuates the tenacious myth of itself as a civilizing, magnanimous force.

10Countering such myths, William McNeill asserts that colonial frontiers tend to create equality and freedom at the same time as they install new inequalities and hierarchies.9 My research will explore how late Chinese imperial states subjected native ethnic peoples, and, as a result, how local power structures were broken and reorganized into a Han-dominated hierarchy. On the flip side, I will demonstrate how local and previously non-Chinese culture transformed Chinese culture and contributed to the creation of the multiethnic Chinese state and nationality.

11This research will also draw attention to Yunnan's role in Southeast Asian history. While maritime Southeast Asia is called "the land below the winds," the Chinese name Yunnan means "[the land] south of clouds." Although Yunnan is sandwiched between Southeast Asia, China, and Tibet, it once bore a closer relationship to mainland Southeast Asia. I invented the title "between winds and clouds" to reveal Yunnan's role in Chinese and Southeast Asian civilization as well.10 Though more and more scholars tend to categorize Yunnan as part of Southeast Asia, it still has not found a significant place in South Asian studies. Yunnan's interactions with other mainland Southeast Asian polities in premodern times have been mostly neglected and its significance in cross-regional trade and commerce has not received proportionate attention.11 The Cambridge History of Southeast Asia does not mention either Nanzhao or Dali in its discussion of ancient Southeast Asian kingdoms.12 Chinese scholars, though producing many works mainly based on Chinese sources, reflect a northern Sinocentric bias, and maintain the arbitrary conclusion that Yunnan has been part of China since the Qin-Han period. It is no exaggeration to state that Yunnan has been a myth to the non-Chinese academy and that, at best, its history in the scholarship of China has been presented in a biased fashion.

12In addition, the transformation of Yunnan into a borderland has contributed to the formation of both Southeast Asia and East Asia. To a large degree, Chinese incorporation and colonial encroachments of Yunnan, Burma, and Vietnam participated in the formation of modern boundaries between these two regions. This book, due to its nature and scope, only touches on this issue, but in so doing compels further research on the historical development and conceptualization of Southeast Asia and East Asia, thereby contributing to the development of world history as a research field.

13The work examines Yunnan through a global perspective, presenting a distinct picture of Yunnan, which is vastly different from that of national history. For instance, my reconceptualization of the Southwest Silk Road illustrates Yunnan's global significance and adds new dimensions to Eurasian interactions and world history. Furthermore, I argue that Yunnan's subjugation to China cannot be accounted for within the confinements of national history; global forces have, as much as Chinese colonialism, contributed to its transformation. In sum, this research attempts to situate a local past through a global perspective.

14The book will contribute to world-system theoretical analyses and applications in three ways: it will enhance its applicability in non-Western areas, reveal its relevance to precapitalist historical development, and present a case study of frontier incorporation. While many scholars focus on the incorporation of the globe into the modern world system, a few, such as Thomas Hall, call for research on "precapitalist" (that is, premodern) incorporations.13 The fact that the Chinese were extraordinarily successful as an imperial power in East Asia and Southeast Asia will provide a better understanding of precapitalist incorporations in world history. The research presents a precise case to illustrate how the Chinese empire, a world empire, transformed an external area into a peripheral one.

15The book aims to illustrate frontier and ethnic contributions to Chinese civilization in the long term by countering the northern-oriented approach to Chinese history, and Han-centric and Sinocentric approaches to ethnicity and the frontier. This book puts the transformation and exchanges that took place in a global framework, asserting that Chinese history only exists as part of a larger, more expansive history.

The Evolution and Uses of Yunnan (Yunnan-Guizhou) and Xi'nan

Official and Academic Deployment of the Terms and the Ensuing Debates

16Can Yunnan, currently a province of China, be treated as a research field in and of itself rather than "Southwest China," a more popular focus in Chinese scholarship? What does it mean to study Yunnan, specifically? In other words, if Southwest China is indeed an academic term, why does the book use Yunnan? A discussion of the two terms will help clarify my choice.

17The term Southwest, or Southwestern (xi'nan), first appeared in Shi Ji (The record of the grand historian). Sima Qian named the indigenes around southern and western Sichuan, northern and western Guizhou, as well as Yunnan, Southwestern Barbarians (xi'nanyi). But the term xi'nanyi is more accurately understood as a combination of Southern Barbarians (nanyi) and Western Barbarians (xiyi), since in most cases the Han Dynasty considered them as such. Both in Shi Ji and Han Shu (History of the Western Han Dynasty), xiyi and nanyi were popularly used, whereas xi'nanyi appeared in a few cases as a single term. The Han court once gave up its supervisory role over the so-called Western Barbarians (xiyi), leaving only Southern Barbarians under its authority. Though it is hard to accurately locate xiyi and nanyi, nanyi inhabited southern Sichuan, northern and western Guizhou, and northern Yunnan, while xiyi resided around western Sichuan and Yunnan.  Furthermore, the term xi'nanyi gradually disappeared from imperial records after the Eastern Han until the late Qing, when scholars began to give more attention to Yunnan and other frontier areas.

18The geographic reference to xi'nan remains ambiguous and has fallen in and out of use. At times it includes Guangdong and Guangxi, though in most cases Southwest China refers to the combination of three provinces, namely, Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou.14 Sometimes Xikang is mentioned as well, but this province was created in the early twentieth century and soon was divided and incorporated into Tibet and Sichuan. During the Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945), when the nationalist government and numerous refugees moved into Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou, the term xi'nan often appeared in all sorts of media, and served as a synonym for the "Great Rear" (dahoufang). However, Xi'nan never became an administrative unit in the early 1950s, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP hereafter) divided China into six military-administrative regions, Northeast, Northwest, Central China, East China, South China, and the Southwest Military-Administrative Committee (Xi'nan Junzheng Weiyuanhui). Under Xi'nan Junzheng Weiyuanhui were Sichuan, Yunnan, Guizhou, and Xikang. But it was only a transition policy, and was abolished in 1953 after the CCP had consolidated its power. The term xi'nan remained an administrative term, but was revoked during the 1960s when the CCP misread the international situation and prepared for the coming of a world war. It was decided that Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou, and other western provinces would constitute the so-called Third Line (sanxian), into which a large number of modern factories were moved from coastal areas. Once more, the three provinces were designated the "Great Rear."

19The relative slackening of central control since the 1980s has provided much space for local autonomy. Scholars in China have begun using the term xi'nan again, regarding it as a macroregion with local characteristics and identity. From this emerged the so-called Southwest studies (xi'nan yanjiu), which treats Southwest China internally as relatively homogenous and externally as an indivisible part of China. Southwest China, according to scholars of this research field, consists of Sichuan (including the recently established and centrally administrated metropolis of Chongqing), Guizhou, Yunnan, Xizang, Guangxi, and parts of Hunan, Hubei, and Qinghai; sometimes it includes part of Guangdong. In any case, Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou comprise the core upon which the term pivots.15 Hence the recent use of xi'nan indeed serves both as a geo-cultural term and as an administrative unit.

20Certainly, not everyone has embraced the concept of xi'nan. In his classic study on economic macroregions in late imperial China, William Skinner abandons the term. He puts most of Sichuan in "Upper Yangtze," and he treats Yunnan and Guizhou together as an independent macroregion. Xi'nan, to Skinner, lacks the connotation of the sort of internal homogeneity necessary for a physiographical region.16 Many Western scholars accept Skinner's Yunnan-Guizhou macroregion (hereafter, Yun-Gui), sometimes under the term xi'nan. For example, James Lee follows Skinner's Yun-Gui macroregion, which includes "the entire province of Yunnan, Guizhou Province south of the Wu River, as well as Xichang Prefecture and the Liangshan Semiautonomous Yi Region of Sichuan Province."17 However, unlike Skinner, Lee has paid more attention to the cultural and demographic identity. His research shows that the waves of Han immigration eventually facilitated local identity.18

21Many contemporary studies also use the term Southwest China, but their definitions vary case by case.19 Some Western scholars also follow the Chinese administrative use of xi'nan.20 Southwest China has acquired such academic currency that readers may wonder why then this research focuses on Yunnan instead of the whole of Southwest China. That is, should Yunnan be the focus of my research topic if Southwest China is relatively common and its use has seemingly been accepted? A historical survey suggests, to the contrary, that Yunnan can be considered a distinct, but fluid, entity with a particular historical experience.

22Furthermore, the fact that Sichuan, Guizhou, and Yunnan were for a long time ruled separately challenges the enduring term Southwest used by scholars of China. In particular, Yunnan's relatively independent historical trajectory is the Achilles heel of contemporary Southwest studies as conducted by scholars of China. During the late Warring State period (475 BCE–222 BCE), the Qin Kingdom dramatically expanded, and, in 332 BCE, it defeated the Shu Kingdom and occupied Sichuan, which provided a strategic base for its eastward and southward advance. Since then, Sichuan has been closely involved with other kingdoms and states in China proper. Although at times an independent regime had ruled Sichuan, Sichuan sought either to conquer other regimes or was itself the target of conquest. Historical facts support the argument that Sichuan, in particular the basin area around Chengdu, has been part of China for over 2,000 years, and that Sichuan had taken an active role in China's imperial struggles.21 It is through this process that Sichuan has established a prominent local identity and culture.

23The incorporation of Sichuan into China presented a springboard for China's southern and southwestern expansion. On the one hand, Sichuan functioned as a peripheral area; on the other hand, it became a local center whenever China marched further. It is no surprise that Sichuan has been treated as a center in Southwest China (xi'nan), and is the reason that xi'nan in ancient times meant something different from what is does today. In the Qin-Han period, xi'nan referred to areas and peoples southwest of the Ba and Shu areas, a Sichuan-centric view. From that point onwards, however, xi'nan has been used from the point of view of the Central Plain (zhongyuan), a Sinocentric view.22

24When Sichuan's relationship with China is compared to Yunnan's, the latter evinces a relatively independent historical track. It was not part of China until the Mongol conquest in 1253, though at times, and especially during the Han Dynasty, Chinese armies did encroach into Yunnan. This region nurtured powerful kingdoms, such as Nanzhao. Even after Yunnan had been conquered, native chieftains enjoyed much autonomy and mediated the control of central states. The reform of native chieftains lasted for about seven centuries, from the Yuan Dynasty to the Republic of China.

25Guizhou has a different history, too. It had been part of or attached to Yunnan-based entities until 1413, when the Ming state established it as a new province. In other words, Guizhou did not exist until the early fifteenth century. It is true that there had been no boundary between Yunnan and Guizhou. Yunnan-based entities dominated or had a powerful impact on Guizhou-based peoples, or vice versa. From 1413 onward, Guizhou Province was listed and made analogous with Sichuan and Yunnan. Yet, Guizhou's significance has not been on par politically, economically, or culturally with the other two provinces. Due to the above-mentioned reasons, the book refers to the whole Yunnan-Guizhou macroregion in references to Yunnan before the Ming Dynasty.

26Only finally, after twenty years of scholarship, have students of China begun to perceive a sort of Orientalism in the tradition of Southwest studies and to seek a methodological resolution, calling for a Southwest- instead of Sinocentric-based approach. Here I cite Xu Xinjian's 1992 Xi'nan Yanjiulun (On Southwest studies) as an illustration of their achievements and intrinsic contradictions. This book is a macro-level and methodological study of Southwest China, and is the only one in the series on Southwest China studies that reflects new theoretical achievements and innovative ideas.

27Xu states that xi'nan is both a geographical and historical concept that is divided into three stages. First, in early times xi'nan was a culture represented by the Homo erectus yuanmouensis. Since Yunnan at that point had not entered the sphere of the Central Plain, it seems more appropriate to call it pre-xi'nan or prehistoric xi'nan. The second stage began when it attracted the notice of the Central Plain but before its subjugation to central states. This is the Han-centrically labeled Southwestern Barbarian period, whose last stage occurred when xi'nan became a local organ inseparable from China. Hence Xu concludes that the so-called Southwest is China's southwest, and Southwest studies is part of Chinese studies.23

28Xu's criticism exemplifies the great effort in Chinese scholarship to get rid of Sinocentralism, or Chinese Orientalism.24 However, his approach has been limited and influenced by Sinocentralism as well. First of all, it fails to consider the Southwest as a whole. In his argument, Xu indeed discusses Yunnan and Sichuan separately, though most of the time, his "Southwest" means Yunnan. Similar cases can be found in other Chinese works. For example, Lan Yong, a famous Southwest studies student, always treats the three provinces discretely, in terms of culture, economy, and history, even when he discusses the regional culture and customs of Southwest China.25 To a large degree, this controversy results from the intrinsic gulf between Sichuan and Yunnan-Guizhou. Historically, as stated above, there were different features and boundaries between the two areas.

29Second, although Xu attempts to divide the concept into three stages, he arrogantly concludes that the Southwest has always been China's southwest, and labels this field as part of Chinese studies. In doing so, he ignores other foreign connections and interactions. Yunnan was southwest of China, but also southeast of Tibet, north of mainland Southeast Asia, and east of India. Ethnically, culturally, and economically, Yunnan established very close relationships with those areas. In addition, treating Yunnan as part of China to a large extent overlooks the dynamics of Yunnan, which in turns weakens a Yunnan-based approach that Chinese scholars recently have called for.

30It is a pity, at this point, that Fang Guoyu's definition of xi'nan has been ignored even by his students.26 The whole xi'nan, according to Fang, occupied modern Yunnan, reached to the south bank of the Dadu River in Sichuan, and extended east to Guiyang, capital of Guizhou Province. Administrative units as imposed by the Chinese states varied: the Southwestern Barbarians (xi'nanyi) during the Han period (206 BCE–220 CE), Nanzhong in the Wei-Jin period (220–420); Ningzhou in the Southern dynasties (420–581); Yunnan Anfusi (Pacification Commission) during the Tang period (618–907), and Yunnan Province (Yunnan Xingsheng or Yunnan Sheng) from the Yuan Dynasty onwards. The actual territory varied among those periods, but basically remained the same until the early Ming period, when Guizhou Province was set up and the area north to the Jinsha River was allotted to Sichuan. Since then, Yunnan had continued as a territory until the arrival of Western powers, whose encroachments helped create modern boundaries. Fang Guoyu's definition of xi'nan is similar to Skinner's Yunnan-Guizhou, and has been accepted by James Lee. But Skinner's concept is basically limited to the nineteenth century, whereas Fang rigorously traces historical continuity.

31This book employs the term Yunnan in a similar way to Fang Guoyu's xi'nan. While I generally follow Fang Guoyu and William Skinner, it is dangerous to imagine boundaries between Southwest China and Southeast Asia before modern times.27 And my Yunnan differs from Fang Guoyu's xi'nan, because I cannot agree with Fang's Sinocentric assumption that xi'nan has been part of China since the Qin-Han period.28 I also diverge from Skinner in that I see the construction of Yunnan as a historical process that went through several important changes while maintaining certain geographical, cultural, and economic features.. Nonetheless, while I retain the word Yunnan, one must bear in mind that Yunnan is a Chinese construct that exemplifies Chinese Orientalism.

Yunnan: A Chinese Invention

32Literally meaning "south of colorful clouds," Yunnan originally was a Chinese term. In fact, the word nan (south), as well as terms like bei (north), dong (east), and xi (west), is often present in the names of places, for example, Henan (south of the Yellow River); Hunan (south of the Dongting Lake); Hainan (south of the sea); Hebei (north of the Yellow River); Hubei (north of the Dongting Lake); Shangdong (east of the Taihang Mountain); and Shanxi (west of the Taihang Mountain). All these names give us a basic idea of their geographical locations. But where was Yunnan, (the land) South of Colorful Clouds? Where were the clouds?

33The term Yunnan was a Han invention that was imposed upon local peoples and their land. It was not employed by the indigenous population until the imperial Chinese administration raised a Yunnanese consciousness among the local population and they eventually nominated themselves Yunnanese. Indeed the terms Yunnan and Yunnanese (yunnanren) came into being in the Yuan-Ming period. A brief review of local history and peoples, though based on Chinese imperial sources, will shed light on Yunnan as a place in the Chinese imagination.

34Indigenous peoples around Yunnan had already developed sophisticated societies when the Chinese came into contact with them. Sima Qian provides a sketch of Yunnan's social landscape around the third to second centuries BCE, when it was inhabited by many tribes, tribal alliances, or kingdoms.29 The Yelang inhabited much of present-day Guizhou, Guangxi, and Yunnan. And it neighbored the Southern Yue Kingdom (Nanyue) in modern Guangdong.30

35The Dian Kingdom was centered in Lake Dian. In the early third century BCE, Zhuang Qiao, a general of the Chu Kingdom, conquered it and made himself king. The Dian Kingdom was quite powerful, and it might have regarded itself as the center of the world.31 Historically, Han scholars identified dian as hailing from the Chinese language, but indeed dian is more likely an indigenous word that was written with Chinese ideographs. Therefore, it is highly probable that the word dian was created by the indigenous peoples as a kind of name for themselves.32 Today the words dian and yun (cloud) are the two official abbreviations of Yunnan, which implies the co-influence of the indigenous and the Chinese on the making of Yunnan.

36The Bo people were located west of the Yelang, apparently in today's Zhaotong. The Mosha people lived in the area from northwestern Yunnan to southwestern Sichuan. The Laojin and Mimo people were located northeast of the Dian. The Xi and Kunming people lived northeast of Baoshan, with the Erhai Lake area as their center. The Ailao and Pu people lived around Baoshan and Dehong, but they may have resided as far south as Upper Burma. The Qiongdu people lived to the north of both the Dian and Mimo, and were probably based in Xichang, Sichuan. The Ranpang were in northwestern Sichuan, bordering Tibet. The Baima stretched from northwestern Sichuan to southern Gansu. The Gouting and Louwo were both neighbors of the Yelang, the former having crossed the boundaries of Guangxi and Yunnan, and the latter entered Guizhou and Yunnan. The Qielan were in modern Guizhou. The Dianyue Kingdom may have been located in Kamarapu, in Assam.33 Therefore, peoples living in and around Yunnan were diverse and there was not a single name either for the indigenes or for the area.

37alt textMap 1.2 The Southwestern Barbarians in the Western Han Period When the Qin State unified China, it is said that the jun-xian (prefecture-county) system reached as far as northern Yunnan, but we do not know the kind and the number of administrative units established there. During the rule of Emperor Wu (140 BCE–87 BCE), the Western Han Dynasty expanded dramatically. The Yelang, Qielan, Qiong, Zuo, Laojin, Mimo, and Dian peoples either surrendered or were conquered by the end of second century BCE, and seven prefectures (Jianwei, Zangke, Yuexi, Shenli, Wenshan, Wudu, and Yizhou) were set up one by one. The Yizhou Prefecture was established to administrate the Dian Kingdom, while the king of Dian, who was retained to rule his people, was endowed with a gold seal. Under the Yizhou Prefecture a county called Yunnan was established.

38The Eastern Han Dynasty continued the cause of southern expansion. The first century saw the submission of the Ailao people under central rule, and the Yongchang Prefecture was set up. But the collapse of the Eastern Han left Yunnan semi-independent or independent until the Mongol conquest in the mid-thirteenth century. Between the third and the early seventh century, the Shu regime (221–263), the Jin Dynasty (265–420), the Song (420–479), the Qi (479–502), and the Tang dynasties (618–907) all established Yunnan as a prefecture. While the indigenous peoples around Yunnan nominally submitted to Chinese states (sometimes centered in Sichuan), it was native chieftains who were the real rulers and in most cases had the final words in local affairs.

39In the mid-seventh century, the Nanzhao Kingdom, one of the many local regimes, gained the support of Tang China and Tibet, and became the first unified state in and around Yunnan. The Tang court awarded the king of Nanzhao the title "prince of Yunnan" (yunnanwang), an indication that Tang China referred to the whole Nanzhao territory as Yunnan. In the early tenth century, the Dali Kingdom was founded in Yunnan. The Song court awarded the king of Dali the titles "governor of Yunnan" (yunnan jiedushi), and "prince of the eight countries in Yunnan" (yunnan baguo junwang). In 1253, Khubilai Khan conquered the Dali Kingdom. In 1274, the Branch Secretariat Council of Yunnan (yunnan xingsheng) was established. The Ming and Qing states kept Yunnan Province while part of Yunnan was established as Guizhou Province in 1413.

40In the beginning, the Chinese used Yunnan to refer to a county, a prefecture, then the area ruled by non-Chinese kingdoms under the tributary language, and finally to a province under the Chinese empire. Ironically, it was the Mongols, non-Chinese "barbarians," who succeeded in bringing Yunnan into China proper, and who established the Yunnan Province. Since then Yunnan's identity as an administrative unit of the Chinese empire has been fixed. Despite the rise and fall of various dynasties, central Chinese states did not lose their control over Yunnan. During the post-Mongol era, the imposition of Chinese administration, the arrival of Chinese migrants on a large scale, and the implantation of Chinese cultural institutions and practices finally created the Yunnanese consciousness. Local people in Yunnan in the Ming period began to call themselves the Yunnanese.

41The origin and transformation of the word Yunnan was intimately associated with the process of incorporation. Was Yunnan part of China? When did Yunnan become part of China? These questions are crucial to the understanding of historical Yunnan and historical China. This research sees Yunnan as a frontier process in which many actors had a role, in order to understand China as a process of change and transformation instead as a fixed concept.

A Frontier Point of View: The Incorporation of Yunnan

42Western scholars have contributed much to Chinese frontier studies. A pioneer in this field, Owen Lattimore was perhaps the first to compare Chinese frontiers with American westward expansion. One might, however, accuse him of affirming a "northern approach," since his works predominantly focus on the Great Wall frontier. While Tibet was incorporated into his frontier, Yunnan, Guizhou, Guangxi, and Vietnam were largely overlooked.34

43Recently, many Western scholars have joined in Chinese frontier studies,35 among whom Charles Backus and James Z. Lee are notable for producing path-breaking works on Yunnan. Backus has examined the interactions between Nanzhao and Tang China, while Lee has produced an inspiring work, whose perspective is long term, on the political economy on the southwestern frontier from 1250 to 1850.36 In addition, several dissertation-based monographs and papers on the southwestern frontiers have been written, focusing mainly on the Ming-Qing period, after Yunnan had been conquered.37 All of these works, while contributing a great deal to scholarship on the southern frontier, have failed to explore Chinese incorporation of Yunnan and the transformation of Yunnan as a macroregion. Moreover, most studies pigeonhole Yunnan within imagined national boundaries of China, thus ignoring non-Chinese factors, elements, and influences. As a result, Chinese studies fail to perceive Southeast Asian features in Yunnan, while Southeast Asian studies have taken for granted that Yunnan belongs to the field of Chinese studies.

44This book seeks to understand the Chinese incorporation of Yunnan over many centuries by pursuing these questions: What had happened in Yunnan before it became a frontier of China? How did it become a frontier of China? Why were the Chinese so successful in their colonization of Yunnan, that, unlike the Tibetans and Muslims in Xinjiang, people in Yunnan have made little effort to detach themselves? And what are the global implications of Chinese frontiers and their incorporation?

45Scholars such as Giersch introduce and apply paradigms, patterns, and theories produced by American frontier scholarship to Chinese frontiers. The term frontier is a key word in the American lexicon, since it symbolizes the vigor and adaptability of the American people and their culture. To many Americans, the frontier not only encapsulates the essence of American past but also determines their future. That is why frontier studies have been a focus of scholarship though over a hundred years have passed since F. J. Turner's 1893 address.38

46Prompting much praise, criticism, and controversy, Turner's interpretation of the role of the frontier in creating American identity has proved to be very valuable. His approach leads me to ask how Yunnan, through a long-term frontier process, has contributed to the development of "Chineseness." My adoption of the frontier paradigm enables one to perceive Yunnan as a process—of sinicization (huahua) on the one hand and indigenization (tuzhuhua) on the other. Social elites (first and foremost, Yunnan Confucian students, who were mainly descendants of Han immigrants) identified themselves as the Yunnanese, although this process did not become widespread until much later. Underlying this shift in identity was the fundamental transformation of Yunnan in terms of demography, administration, economy, and culture. The identity of the Yunnanese, a provincial-level identity, not only demonstrated the success of Chinese incorporation but also added new dimensions to Chinese identity, or Chineseness. Briefly, the incorporation of Yunnan facilitated the creation of Chinese identity as multicultural or multiethnic.

A Global Perspective on a Local Past

47The notable absence of Nanzhao and Dali kingdoms both in Chinese and Southeast Asian studies results from an imagined boundary between the two areas.39 To overcome the weakness of area studies, this research employs a global perspective. By this, I refer to a cross-regional/cross-national/cross-cultural approach, or cross-border perspective. In doing so, I attempt to situate Yunnan in its own historical world, and emphasize connections and interactions across imagined regional boundaries.

48By focusing on the so-called Southwest Silk Road, I strive to demonstrate the importance of Yunnan in cross-regional commercial and cultural exchanges. Yunnan has never been as isolated by the mountains, rivers, or harsh climate as was commonly thought. This road network began to function as early as the second century BCE. On it circulated diverse goods such as ivory, silver, cotton, salt, tea, horses, jade, lumber, gold, copper, tin, lead, silk, and local products as well as religions such as Buddhism, Taoism, and Islam. Stretching from the southern coast of Indochina to as far north as the Tibetan Plateau, this road intersected the Maritime Silk Road and the Overland Silk Road, linking Tibet, China, Central Asia, South Asia, and Southeast Asia. These three Silk Roads embodied the communication web of the Eurasian supercontinent.

49Culturally, ethnically, economically, and politically, Yunnan had been more "Southeastern Asian" at least before the Mongol conquest in the mid-thirteenth century. My study shows that neither Yunnan's political subjugation nor economic incorporation into China was achieved solely by Chinese states. It is the Mongols who succeeded at what the former great Chinese empires had failed, that is, bringing Yunnan into China proper. In short, a legacy of transregional power struggles shaped modern boundaries in Southwest China.

50Chinese economic incorporation of Yunnan was also facilitated by these continental forces. The replacement of cowry money in Yunnan with Chinese copper coins in the Ming-Qing transition should be, to large extent, accredited to the expansion of the transatlantic slave trade. Likewise, Japan's control over copper exports to China sped the Qing Empire to explore the copper source in Yunnan, a project of unprecedented risk in a recently conquered frontier province. In this manner, Yunnan's economic reorientation, just like its military subjugation, serves to reveal the global influence along the trajectory of the local frontier. Therefore, the formation of modern Yunnan could not be accounted for only in terms of the category of China. Rather, global interactions shaped the transformation of Yunnan over the course of more than 2,000 years.

51The key issue of the book is Chinese incorporation of frontier or peripheral areas, or, in other words, Chinese imperial colonialism, which has been a focus of frontier studies in the last decade. Shepherd's study on Qing's administration of Taiwan, and Peter Perdue's China Marches West, for example, are rich cases studies. Qing colonial enterprise has been also discussed by Giersch and Emma Jinhua Teng. Teng's approach is somewhat distinctive, as she has scrutinized Qing travel writings about Taiwan, thereby illustrating the Qing literati's changing perceptions of Taiwan from a savage area to part of the empire. This shift in the conceptualization of Chinese empire reflects indeed all kinds of efforts made by the Qing Empire in this recently conquered frontier land, as shown in Shepherd's book.

52This book aims to illustrate some distinctive features of Chinese incorporation of Yunnan. It differs from Teng's analysis because it not only discusses the change in the Chinese view of the frontier and its people but also, more importantly, I think, the process of transformations that took place in local society. Moreover, the long-term frontier processes of Yunnan dwarf the case of Taiwan. Taiwan was only conquered by China during the Ming-Qing transition, while skirmishes, wars, and trade had taken place between China and Yunnan over 2,000 years ago. Hence, the case of Yunnan not only shows the development of late imperial China but also the emergence of early Chinese empires. Likewise, the time and space frame of the book differs from that of Giersch and Peter Perdue, whose research focuses on the Qing Empire. While both of them emphasize the concept of "Asian borderland," to borrow Giersch's term, this book traces Chinese frontiers as Asian borderland much earlier.

53Indeed, the Chinese frontier process was never local, but global, which, as the starting point of my research, distinguishes itself by adopting a world-system and long-term perspective to demonstrate global interactions as much as Chinese imperial colonial initiatives.

54Since Immanuel Wallerstein's first book on the modern world-system in 1974, his constructive approach to human history has been widely acknowledged, hotly debated, and much applied by many scholars of diverse backgrounds. Much attention has been given to the process of incorporation into world systems, which is crucial to the evolution of world systems themselves and, consequently, human history. Studying how frontiers became peripheral areas in the first place will shed light on the theoretical development of world-system perspectives. Thomas Hall has demonstrated in his study of the American southwest frontier how incorporation into the modern world-system tremendously changed the frontier society but left little influence on the system itself.40 In this way, Hall has established a conceptual link between the frontier and the world-system with reference to how Wallerstein's modern world-system incorporated and marginalized an external area.41 Hall as well as some other scholars have called for further historical studies of incorporation into world-systems in the precapitalist world. Expansion by some world-systems, or empires, and their incorporation of frontiers would be an effective lens to examine world history in its entirety.  In fewer words, world history can be written by following the central trope of the incorporation of frontiers into world-systems. David Wilkinson's concept of Central Civilization seems to have a similar framework. His "Central Civilization" originated in 1500 BCE, and gradually incorporated neighboring civilizations (which can be seen as frontiers), in turn becoming fully global after 1500.42

55The study of Yunnan's transformation is precisely such a process of transformation from an external area into a periphery that exemplifies the incorporation of world-system. The Middle Kingdom originated in the Wei River Valley, and gradually incorporated neighboring areas and peoples. From small polities near the Yellow River to huge empires such as the Han and the Tang, the Chinese empire was, to some extent, based upon the history of incorporation. While China as an entity has continually changed, the experience of incorporation has created institutions to successfully transform others, through the process of sinicization. My study of Yunnan is aimed at revealing this mechanism in order to present a case for its precapitalist incorporation into the Chinese world-system, as well as to improve upon some inaccuracies in the world-system debates.

Sources and Structure

56This book relies on diverse and abundant sources. Chinese documents are the most plentiful, of which a thirteen-volume collection entitled Yunnan Shiliao Congkan ([YNSLCK] the collection of Yunnan historical sources), serves as a principal source. These thirteen volumes include almost all official records (i.e., the twenty-six dynasty histories), tablets, inscriptions, literature works, and scholarly works about Yunnan from the Western Han (206 BCE–9 CE) to the end of the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911). It holds almost all Chinese sources about Yunnan except for gazetteers (fangzhi). YNSLCK also includes some translated foreign works, for example, Marco Polo's travel in Yunnan. This giant project has been convenient for Yunnan studies, since they liberate scholars from locating and plowing through scattered documents. Furthermore, each entry in YNSLCK contains an introduction as well as commentary that provide some background on its historical context, content, and implication. However, one has to be careful in reading these interpretative essays, since very often they take a Sinocentric stance. This book usually cites historical records from YNSLCK, instead of from Shi Ji or other imperial records or works.

57I also rely on other primary sources that are not anthologized in YNSLCK. For dynasty history, I refer to the histories of the twenty-four dynasties published by Zhonghua Shuju. Gazetteers are important to this research. As a product of Confucian ideology, the gazetteer was edited as soon as central administrative hierarchy was imposed locally. Yunnan gazetteers were firstly produced in the Ming, but largely in the Qing, which coincides with the process of sinicization. Through gazetteers, we can locate the changes of local customs through advocacy to Confucian ideology, for example, in weddings, festivals, and other ceremonies.

58Archaeological findings on Yunnan and neighboring areas also facilitate my study, for excavations in Southwestern China have contributed much to the rewriting of Chinese prehistory and early history. Indeed, significant discoveries such as thousands of cowries and the seal of Prince Dian (dianwangzhiyin) illustrate Yunnan's close interactions with its neighbors. The past few decades have witnessed many important excavations, such as those at Sanxingdui near Chengdu.

59Yunnan studies in China are fairly advanced, so secondary sources are abundant, too. As early as in the 1930s, Fang Guoyu and other Chinese scholars began to devote their attention to Yunnan as a response to the frontier crisis caused by European encroachments. Fang's works have laid the foundation for later scholars. During the 1950s and 1960s, large-scale fieldwork produced volumes of data that serve as a base for scholars. The last two decades have witnessed the burgeoning of this discipline, especially since many young scholars, including those from ethnic minorities, have joined the field. Using Western theories of sociology, ethnography, archaeology, and linguistics, they now challenge the Han perspective with a Yunnan perspective that is seen through the Naxi or Bai nationalities. In addition, Tibetan studies is developing rapidly, and many Tibetan documents have been translated, published, and studied, a development which certainly helps us rethink the relationship among Yunnan, Tibet, and China. Secondary sources also include documents in the field of Southeast Asian studies. The interaction of mainland Southeast Asia and Yunnan (in a sense, Yunnan in a Southeast Asian context) has been a crucial point in understanding Yunnan's dynamics. However, few scholars have taken it seriously.

60Western scholars have also participated in this field. As early as the beginning of the twentieth century, the brilliant Paul Pelliot began paying significant attention to Indochina. His works on communication networks between South China (including Yunnan) and Indochina are still of value. Since the 1980s, more and more Western scholars have turned to Yunnan mainly because of its diverse ethnicity and culture, and many insightful works have come of their attentions. For example, several panels and presentations in the 2003 annual meeting of the Association of Asian Studies in New York were concerned with Southwest China, particularly Yunnan. Japanese scholars are also showing interest in Yunnan, and some of them suggest that ancient Japanese culture might have originated in Yunnan.43

61The format of this book is as follows. Besides this introduction, it is divided into six chapters, plus a conclusion. The following chapter, entitled, "The Southwest Silk Road: Yunnan in a Global Context," explores the significance of Yunnan in cross-regional interactions by focusing on the Southwest Silk Road. Chapter three, "Military Campaigns against Yunnan: A Cross-Regional Analysis," examines the international background and the myriad reasons for military campaigns against Yunnan. I argue that global forces accounted for these military campaigns as much as Chinese factors. Chapter four, "Rule Based on Native Customs," investigates the special administrative hierarchal system developed during the post-conquest era. The major issue here is the evolution of the native chieftain system (tusi zhidu) that resulted from interactions between the encroaching central states and local power. Chapter five, "Sinicization and Indigenization: The Emergence of the Yunnanese," devotes itself to analyzing the process of incorporation that initiated a new society in Yunnan. By focusing on interactions between native peoples and the large number of Chinese immigrants during the Ming Dynasty, I argue that sinicization of the native population and indigenization of Chinese immigrants are the two sides of the same coin that eventually created a new identity for Yunnan in the late Ming period. As a result, the incorporation of Yunnan helped establish China as a multiethnic empire. Chapter six, "Silver, Cowries, and Copper: Economic Reorientation," moves from administration and culture to economy, analyzing how global and Chinese forces reoriented Yunnan's economy. Several events marked the emergence of a new local economic pattern. First, silver output in Yunnan contributed to the Ming monetization, which showed how the frontier began to serve the empire. Second, copper cash replaced cowry money in the Ming-Qing transition, which showed that the Chinese money system overcame the Bengal practice. Finally, the copper mining administration in the Qing period illustrated the establishment of periphery-center structure. In sum, while a new provincial economic structure was created in Yunnan, it served as a periphery in the Chinese world-economy by supplying minerals and precious metals. The last chapter, "Classification into the Chinese National Family," scrutinizes the Minzu Identification (minzu shibie) project in the People's Republic of China, which introduced a new form of institution on local peoples there and thereby revealed the historical continuity and development from imperial to modern China.44

62In general, chapters two and three demonstrate the significance of Yunnan's geographic location, which made Yunnan a nucleus of cross-regional trade and a land in which Eurasian rivals had to compete. Chapters four, five, and six analyze the transformation of Yunnan in terms of demography, administration, identity, and economy. Chapter seven discusses how the imperial legacy shaped modern state building, or conversely, how the modern state continued and developed imperial discourse.


Note 1: C. P. FitzGerald, The Southern Expansion of the Chinese People (New York and Washington: Praeger, 1972), 8. back

Note 2: FitzGerald has brought up the comparison of Yunnan and Vietnam (Annam) during both the early medieval period and the twentieth century. However, it seems few scholars have showed much interest. Here I broaden his view. FitzGerald 1972, 8-9. back

Note 3: William McNeill, The Rise of the West: A History of the Human Community (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991), 476-477. back

Note 4: See Denis Twitchett, ed., The Cambridge History of China, Vol. 3 (Cambridge, London, New York, and Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 1979); Herbert Franke and Denis Twichett, eds., The Cambridge History of China, Vol. 6 (Cambridge, London, New York, and Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 1994). back

Note 5: History Research Institute, Social Science Academy, Zhongguo Lishi Nianbiao (Chronology of Chinese history) (Beijing: Shehuikexue Chubanshe, 2002); Zhongguo Lishi Jinian Shouce (A handbook of Chinese history chronology) (Beijing: Qixiang Chubanshe, 2002). In fact, all these northern kingdoms are written into textbooks for students to memorize. back

Note 6: For a southern approach to modern Chinese history, see Edward Friedman, "Reconstructing China's National Identity: A Southern Alternative to Mao-Era Anti-Imperialist Nationalism," Journal of Asian Studies 53, no. 1 (1994): 67-91. back

Note 7: Such a case is made by Kenneth Pomeranz in his The Making of a Hinterland: State, Society, and Economy in Inland North China, 1853–1937 (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and Oxford: University of California Press, 1993). In this study, Pomeranz demonstrates how the Huang-Yun region was unable to reproduce its society as the Qing state redistributed its resources under the Western challenge. Thus, a global change helped create a hinterland in China, which indeed occurred in Yunnan as well. back

Note 8: In the 1990s the Chinese state made a strategic decision to develop its western area for its so-called sustainable growth. The strategy is expected to solve the increasing polarization between the costal and inland areas since the 1980s. back

Note 9: William McNeill, The Great Frontier: Freedom and Hierarchy in Modern Times (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1983). back

Note 10: Yunnan's connections with the two civilizations provide important sources for its own power and dynamics. It is intriguing to consider the cultural ties implied by the famous Chinese saying, "Clouds accompany dragons, while winds accompany tigers" (Yun cong long, feng cong hu), as the dragon is the symbolic creature of Chinese culture, while the tiger can be seen as at least one of the symbolic representations of mainland Southeast Asia. back

Note 11: For example, see Anthony Reid, Southeast Asia in the Age of Commerce 1450–1680, Vols. I, II (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1988 and 1993). back

Note 12: Nicholas Tarling, The Cambridge History of Southeast Asia, Vol. 1, From Early Times to c. 1800 (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1992). back

Note 13: Thomas Hall, Social Change in the Southwest, 1350–1880 (Lawrence: University of Kansas Press, 1989). back

Note 14: Robert A. Kapp, "Themes in the History of 20th-Century Southwest China," Pacific Affairs 51, no. 3 (1978): 448-459. back

Note 15: For the definition, see the Southwest China Study Series by the Yunnan Educational Publishing House, and for an example, see Yang Tingshuo and Luo Longkang, Xi'nan yu zhongyuan (The Southwest and the Central Plain) (Kunming: Yunnan Educational Publishing House, 1992). back

Note 16: William Skinner, The City in Late Imperial China (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1977). back

Note 17: James Lee, "The Legacy of Immigration in Southwest China, 1250–1850," Annales de demographie historique (1982): 279-304; James Lee, "Food Supply and Population Growth in Southwest China, 1250–1850," Journal of Asian Studies 41 (1982): 711-746; James Lee, "The Southwest: Yunnan and Guizhou," in Nourish the People: State Granaries and Food Supply in China, 1650–1850, ed. Pierre-Etienne Will and R. Bin Wong, with James Lee (Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 1991). Yu Yingshi also uses xi'nan in this sense; see Yu Yingshi, Trade and Expansion in Han China: a Study in the Structure of Sino-Barbarian Economic Relations (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1967). back

Note 18: Lee 1982, 711-746. back

Note 19: William T. Rowe, "Education and Empire in Southwest China," in Education and Society in Late Imperial China, 1600–1900, ed. Benjamin A. Elman and Alexander Woodside (Berkeley, Los Angeles, and London: University of California Press, 1989), 417-457; Dai Yingcong, "The Rise of the Southwestern Frontier Under the Qing 1640–1800," dissertation, University of Washington, 1996; John E. Herman, "Empire in the Southwest: Early Qing Reforms to the Native Chieftain System," Journal of Asian Studies 56, no. 1 (1997): 47-74. For example, Dai's southwestern frontiers include Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou, though he somewhat realizes its problem. See Dai 1996, 3-4; Herman's 1997 research has not given a definition of "the Southwest," but his paper mainly examines Yunnan-Guizhou and part of Sichuan and Huguang, following Skinner's Yun-Gui macroregion. back

Note 20: Robert A. Kapp 1978, 448-459. back

Note 21: This is a general statement, since southern Sichuan was incorporated quite a bit later. See Richard Von Glahn, The Country of Streams and Grottoes: Expansion, Settlement, and the Civilizing of the Sichuan Frontier in Song Time (Cambridge, Mass., and London: Harvard University Press, 1987). After all, modern provincial boundaries of those provinces have changed historically. In other words, there were no clear boundaries in early days, as native chieftains controlled territories over the lands that were later designated as provinces. back

Note 22: Qi Qingfu, Xi'nanyi (Southwest Barbarians) (Jilin: Jilin Jiaoyu Chubanshe, 1990), 5. back

Note 23: Xu Xinjian, Xi'nan Yanjiu Lun (On Southwest studies) (Kunming: Yunnan Jiaoyu Chubanshe, 1992). back

Note 24: For the Chinese criticism on the Sinocentric perspective in Southwest studies, see general preface of Southwest China Study Series. Yang Tingshuo and Luo Kanglong, for instance, in their book (one in the series) on the relations between the Southwest and the Central Plain, severely denounce the cultural bias in the Chinese scholarship. See Yang Tingshuo and Luo Longkang, Xi'nan yu Zhongyuan (The Southwest and the Central Plain) (Kunming: Yunnan Jiaoyu Chubanshe, 1992). back

Note 25: See works by Lan Yong, for example, Xi'nan Lishi Wenhua Dili (Historical and cultural geography of the Southwest) (Chongqing: Xi'nan Normal University, 1997). back

Note 26: Fang Guoyu, Zhongguo Xi'nan Lishi Dili Kaoshi (Historical and geographical examinations of Southwest China) (Beijing: Zhonghua Shuju, 1987), 2 vols. Fang Guoyu (1903–1983) was the founding scholar of Yunnan studies. back

Note 27: For the cross-boundary trade system in the nineteenth century, see Chiranan Prasertkul, Yunnan Trade in the Nineteenth Century: Southwest China's Cross-Boundaries Functional System (Bangkok: Chulalongkorn University Printing House, 1998); for discussions of southern borders, see Shih-chung Hsieh, "On the Dynamics of Tai/Dai-Lue Ethnicity," in Stevan Harrell 1995, 301-328; Geoff Wade, "The Southern Chinese Borders in History," in Where China Meets Southeast Asia: Social and Cultural Change in the Border Region, ed. G. Evans, C. Hutton, and K. E. Kuah (New York: St. Martin's; Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2000), 28-50. back

Note 28: Some Western scholars blindly follow this Sinocentric paradigm. William McNeill states that Yunnan was added on to China between 600 and 1000, namely the Tang-Song or the Nanzhao-Dali period, which is certainly wrong. See McNeill 1991, 476-477. back

Note 29: For discussions of early peoples, see Fang Guoyu, Zhongguo Xi'nan Lishidili Kaoshi (Studies of history and geography of Southwest China), Vol. 1 (Beijing: Zhonghua Shuju, 1987), 9-28. back

Note 30: For recent scholarship of Yelang, see the 1999 Yelang Research Conference, Yelang Yanjiu (Studies of the Yelang Kingdom) (Guiyang: Guizhou Renmin Chubanshe, 1999). back

Note 31: The king of Dian asked a Han envoy, "which is larger, the Han or my kingdom?" See Shi Ji (thereafter SJ), juan 116, in Yunnan Shiliao Congkan (The collection of Yunnan historical sources, thereafter YNSLCK), ed. Fang Guoyu (Kunming: Yunnandaxue Chubanshe, 1998), 13 vols., no 1: 5. back

Note 32: For discussions, for example, see You Zhong, Yunnan Difang Yangeshi (Local administrative transitions of Yunnan) (Kunming: Yunnan Renmin Chubanshe, 1990), 1-3. back

Note 33: Scholars of China usually think it was in Tengchong and Dehong, but Chen Ruxing argues that it was in Assam. See Chen Ruxing, "Zhubo Kao" (A study of Zhubo), Journal of Southeast Asian Researches 6 (1970): 97-105; "Shanguo Kao" (A study of Shan), Dalu Zazhi 83, no. 4 (1991): 145-148; "Guanyu 'Biaoyue,' 'Panyue,' yu 'Dianyue' de Kaoshi" (A scrutiny of "Biaoyue," "Panyue," and "Dianyue"), Dalu Zazhi 84, no. 5 (1992): 198-202. back

Note 34: Owen Lattimore, Inner Asian Frontiers of China (Boston: Beacon Press, 1962). back

Note 35: Robert Lee, The Manchurian Frontier in Ching's History (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1971); James Lee 1982a–1982b; Von Glahn 1987; John Robert Shepherd, Statecraft and Political Economy on the Taiwan Frontier (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1993); James A. Millward, Beyond Pass: Economy, Ethnicity, and Empire in Qing Central Asia, 1759–1864 (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1998); Dai 1996; Ness 1998; Giersch 1998; Giersch, Asian Borderlands: The Transformation of Qing China's Yunnan Frontier (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2006); John E. Herman, "Empire in the Southwest: Early Qing Reforms to the Native Chieftain System," Journal of Asian Studies 56, no. 1 (1997), 47-74; John E. Herman, Amid the Clouds and Mist: China's Colonization of Guizhou, 1200–1700 (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Asia Center: Distributed by Harvard University Press, 2007); Emma Jinhua, Taiwan's Imagined Geography: Chinese Colonial Travel Writings and Pictures, 1683–1895 (Cambridge, Mass.; London: Harvard University Asia Center, 2004); David G. Atwill, The Chinese Sultanate: Islam, Ethnicity, the Panthay Rebellion in Southwest China, 1856–1873 (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 2005); Jennifer Took, A Native Chieftaincy in Southwest China (Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2005); Peter Perdue, China Marches West: The Qing Conquest of Central Eurasia (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2005); Leo Kwok-Yueh Shin, The Making of the Chinese State: Ethnicity and Expansion on the Ming Borderland (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006). back

Note 36: Backus 1981. James Lee's dissertation-based monograph is said to have been published by Harvard University Press (2004) as A Frontier Political Economy, Southwest China. However, the publication has been cancelled. back

Note 37: For monographs, for example, see Atwill 2005; Took 2005; Giersch 2006; Leo 2006; and Herman 2007. back

Note 38: Frederick Jackson Turner, The Turner Thesis: Concerning the Role of the Frontier in American History, 3rd edition, ed. with an introduction by George Rogers Taylor (Lexington, Mass., Toronto, and London: D.C. Heath and Company, 1972). back

Note 39: Liu Hong points out that the contact zones between China and Southeast Asia are ignored in the academy. He advocates that these zones be taken as the beginning point instead of the end of analyses. In doing so, a fuller understanding of Asia or Sino-Southeast Asian interactions may be achieved. See Liu Hong, "Sino-Southeast Asian Studies: The End as the Beginning," in Sino-Southeast Asian Studies: Theoretical Paradigms, Interaction Patterns, and Case Analyses, ed. Liu Hong (Beijing: Zhongguo Shehuikexue Chubanshe, 2000), 4. back

Note 40: Thomas Hall 1989. back

Note 41: Wallerstein Immanuel Wallerstein, The Modern World System, Vols. 1, 2, 3 (New York: Academic Press, 1974, 1980, and 1988). back

Note 42: David Wilkinson, "Central Civilization," in Civilization and World Systems, ed. Stephen K. Sanderson (Walnut Creek, Calif.; London; and New Delhi: AltaMira, 1995), 46–74. back

Note 43: For Japanese scholarship on Yunnan, see Kurihara Satoshi, "Yunnan Historical Studies in Japan: Development and Current Issue," Asian Research Trends 1 (1991): 135–153. back

Note 44: Minzu refers to some state-designated ethnic units in the People's Republic of China. For further discussion, see chapter seven. back