The Upper Min River Basin: A key ehno-cultural corridor in China (2005)

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Owing to its physical environment, the upper Min River Basin, situated at an ecological transition belt in China, has long been a place where many ethnic groups have settled; it is also a corridor through which different ethnic groups have migrated from northwestern to southwestern China or vice versa. Apart from its recognised biodiversity, it is also a place of cultural diversity, as an ethno-cultural corridor in China. A number of ethnic groups such as the Qiang, Tibetan, Han, and Hui nationalities and their different sub-groups have lived here for many centuries. The distribution of these ethnic groups follows altitudinal patterns, with the Han and the Hui people living in river valleys, the Qiang at a higher altitude, and the Tibetans at the highest altitudes. This points to their respective historical roles and adaptation to different environments. Given the inaccessibility and geographical isolation of their environment, all ethnic groups have maintained much of their traditional cultures, while some sub-ethnic groups came into being due to recurrent wars and cultural assimilation between groups. At present, with mountain natural resources exploited and mountain areas being greatly developed, many ethnic cultures are threatened with extinction. Much work at both local level and policy level needs to be done to preserve these diversified cultures and the potential for sustainability that they harbour.

Year: 2005
Language: English
In: Mountain Research and Development 25(1):25-29. http://www.bioone.org/doi/pdf/10.1659/0276-4741%282005%29025%5B0025%3ATUMRB%5D2.0.CO%3B2,

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 Record created 2011-12-21, last modified 2013-01-17