Published in December 2013 by Lexington Books, “The Disempowered Development of Tibet in China: A Study in the Economics of Marginalization” by Andrew Fischer looks at the major development programs that have been launched in Tibet since the mid-1990s by the Chinese central authorities.
From the publisher’s website:
Fischer argues that the intensified economic integration of Tibet into regional and national development strategies on these assimilationist terms, within a context of continued political disempowerment, and through the massive channeling of subsidies through Han Chinese dominated entities based outside the Tibetan areas, has accentuated various dynamics of subordination and marginalization faced by Tibetans of all social strata. Whether or not these dynamics are intended to be discriminatory, they effectively accentuate the discriminatory, assimilationist and disempowering characteristics of development, even while producing considerable improvements in the material consumption of local Tibetans. In particular, strong cultural, linguistic and political biases intensify ethnically-exclusionary dynamics among middle and upper strata of the Tibetan labor force, which is problematic considering the rapid shift of Tibetans out of agriculture and towards the highly subsidy-dependent sectors of the economy, especially in urban areas.
The combination of these disempowering dynamics with the sheer speed of dislocating and disembedding social change provides important insights into recent tensions given that it has accentuated insecurity while restricting the ability of Tibetan communities to adapt in autonomous and self-determined ways.
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