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Introduction: Maps of Diasporic Consciousness(簡介:海外華人意識的地圖)

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image of Translocal Chinese: East Asian Perspectives

There are several good reasons for the reluctance to call the overlapping waves of Chinese migration overseas since at least the 14th century, the Chinese diaspora. The term diaspora has come to refer to relatively homogenized groups with a strong sense of loyalty to the homeland. The overseas Chinese distributed over six populated continents are not homogenous. Yet the term diaspora is not entirely mistaken because the overwhelming bulk of the Chinese emigrant population left China over the last century and a half and developed some relationship of identity or loyalty with the homeland and the nation-state of China. To understand the diaspora historically, we need to outline the maps of consciousness—loyalties, interests, discourses, identities, projects and goals—that are relevant to the group being researched or investigated. A more embedded layer of activity often shapes and segments these maps of consciousness: these are the geopolitical and economic circumstances. The hinge between geopolitics and the maps of consciousness that has allowed Chinese communities to respond and navigate their ways through these changing circumstances have been their institutions and perhaps even more importantly, the ubiquitous and multiple networks in which most Chinese participate. Networks of native-place origins, lineages, provincial ties, language groups, religious groups and secret society groups, among others, have been historically well documented and need not detain us here. What this volume reveals however is other, perhaps more modern, networks: those constructed by the Japanese imperialist labor regime, and those developed along the dissemination of Christianity, political parties, academic research, financial capital, advertisement and even a legend of a Hokkien pirate among key global port cities.一直以來都有一些拒絕把至少從十四世紀以來一波波出洋移居的華人通稱為「華僑」的看法,其中一個好理由是:「僑胞」所指涉的是一群相對同質、對原鄉帶有強烈忠誠的團體;而散居在六大洲的海外華人並不是同質的。但「僑胞」的概念卻又可以適切地反映出在過去一個半世紀以來,從中國移出的、並非同質的社群之間對於祖籍和中國這個民族國家所發展出的某種認同或效忠的關係。為了要歷史性地了解海外華人,我們必須探討所欲研究的各個團體所發展出來之意識的地圖──包括忠誠、利益、論述、認同、議程和目標等。這些意識的地圖鑲篏在地緣政治和經濟環境之上,後者往往會形塑或切割這些意識的地圖。透過華人的制度以及或許是更為重要的、無所不在和多元層次的華人網絡,華人社群得以回應並在各種變遷的地緣政治和經濟環境裡游移;這構成了地緣政治經濟和意識地圖之間的連結。既有的歷史資料已充分記載各種華人網絡,包括同鄉組織、宗族、省籍連帶、語言群、宗教和秘密社會等,在此毋庸贅言。本專輯卻呈現出不同的、或者是以更為現代的形式所出現的各種網絡:日本殖民主義主導下的勞工移民,以及華人在各全球港口之間散布的基督教、政黨、學術研究、金融資本、廣告甚至是閩南海盜傳說。 (This article is in English).

Affiliations: 1: Duke University, ; 2: 杜克大學


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