chapter  3
Space, place and ethnic identity in the Xinjiang Regional Museum
WithAnna Hayes
Pages 21

This chapter examines the representations of Xinjiang's nationalities and regional history in the Xinjiang regional museum. It intersects with other works that have explored ethnicity and the contested histories of the region. The chapter analyses what constitutes the official narrative of the region's nationalities and history, and if/how this representation has taken the form of a re-imagining of Xinjiang's people and its history. It considers to what extremes representations of minority histories provide an insight into the wider lived experience of minority nationalities in Xinjiang, and where they are situated in contemporary imaginings of the Chinese state and nationalism. The chapter demonstrates that the Xinjiang Regional Museum has some way to go before it meets this particular goal. It reflects a more traditional approach on how museums should function within a state. The chapter contains a nationalised mythology that is intent on informing and uniting the masses under a shared history and sense of identity.