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ECCE speaker series: Terror Capitalism: Uyghur ‘Reeducation’ and the Chinese Security Industrial Complex

Event Type
Office of International Student Services, Department of History, and others
Brookens Auditorium
Nov 8, 2019   7:30 pm  
Darren Byler
Erika Suzuki

A new system of control, made up of a multi-billion dollar industry of computer-vision technologies, militarized policing, and the mass mobilization of Chinese civil servants and Han industrialists,  is attempting to transform Uyghur and other Turkic minority societies in Northwest China. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in the Uyghur region, this talk describes the history which produced these forms of surveillance and demonstrates the quotidian experience of their effects in Uyghur society. It argues that this system of “reeducation” is, in fact, a social engineering system that works in concert with a Chinese form of illiberal capitalism. As it is implemented, it has the effect of partitioning and radically disempowering those already marginalized within national and international global systems. It shows that these new automated forms of surveillance, coercive Han-centric education systems, as well as new modes of state-enforced capitalist discipline amplify the power of those who engineer and implement these systems while rapidly disintegrating minority social systems.

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