Tibetan and Himalayan Library - THL

THL Title Text
Title: Mobilizing for Tibet: Transnational Politics and Diaspora Culture in the Post-Cold War Era
Language of title: English
Author/Creator: Margaret Jane McLagan
One Sentence Summary: This dissertation is a multiple-site study of the Tibet Movement, a transnational social movement comprised of Tibetan refugees and their Western supporters.

Description: This dissertation is a multiple-site study of the Tibet Movement, a transnational social movement comprised of Tibetan refugees and their Western supporters. It is based on field research conducted in sites which reflect the spread of the Tibetan diaspora and represent important 'nodes' in the global Tibet network, including New York City, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., London, Geneva, and Dharamsala, India. Unlike most refugee groups, Tibetans have a set of religious and cultural traditions which are deeply appealing to non-Tibetans. This dissertation explores the various ways in which Tibet activists engage with stereotyped representations of Tibet as 'Shangri-la' in order to mobilize political support for Tibetans' struggle against China's occupation of their homeland. Part One demonstrates the ways in which representations of Tibet have become part of an extended discursive space in which Tibetan identity is constructed, circulated, and contested by refugees, activists, Chinese officials, and scholars. Part Two examines the resettlement of Tibetan refugees in India, Switzerland, and the United States and traces the emergence of a Western support network. Part Three analyzes the co-production of Tibetan Buddhist 'culture' by activists in New York City during the 'International Year of Tibet.' The dissertation explores connections between the ways people narrate personal experiences and transformations--both spiritual and political--related to Tibet and their participation in the Tibet Movement through an analysis of 'diaspora' and 'Tibet' narratives. To do so it draws on recent theoretical work on cultural production and poststructuralist and postcolonial theory, but attempts to ground these often abstract debates in a complex ethnographic reality. The thesis argues that with its global organization and interventions, the Tibet Movement represents an emergent form of political activism, one that is profoundly intercultural and dependent upon the complex production of representations. As such, it provides a case study of 'postnational' social formations which are increasingly playing an important role in the mediation of diasporic or 'ethnic' identities in the post-cold war era. (from the dissertation's abstract)

Publisher: UMI
Publisher country: United States
Published Date: 1996

Published Date Note: 1996 PhD dissertation for New York University

Composition date note (non-international date):
Extent: 613 pp.
Classification: Tibetan and Himalayan -- Society -- Identity Issues -- Tibetan Identity in Exile
Cultural Coverage: Tibet
Temporal coverage: 20th century CE
Language: English
Format: Print media (print or manuscript, including PDFs)
Resource Type: Dissertation
Release Flag: OK for viewing
Date Of Record Creation: 2006-04-06 17:39:15
Date Last Modified: 2006-04-17 12:21:47
Cumulative Rating: this resource has a 1 star rating
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