Culture policies and Sino-Soviet relations in Kazakhstan and Sinkiang, 1917-60

Schachner, Gerhard (1980) Culture policies and Sino-Soviet relations in Kazakhstan and Sinkiang, 1917-60. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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The object of this study is to assess the extent to which the
Turkic people of Kazakhstan and Sinkiang have been aligned politically
and socially with the socialist societies of their respective countries. It is not intended to consider this question in the light of
success or failure. There are several reasons for not doing so. It
would be realistic to consider the question in this light only if a
definite goel was to be achieved within a specified period of time.
This was not the case in either Kazakhstan or Sinkiang. There was and
is no definable period of time within which Communism is to be
achieved. Equally important, Communism remains a hazy expression for a
state of existence that yet has to be defined in a manner that is universally
In this study the various political, cultural, religious and educational
aspects of the Turkic people will be considered. The intention
is to discover to what extent these traditions have been replaced
by the social institutions of the socialist societies. This in turn
should allow some insight into the advances made by both the Russian
and Chinese Communists in their attempts to transform their respective
Turkic people. At the same time the study deals with specific difficulties
that the Governments had to overcome in the course of the
transformation process. These include getting the Turkic people to
participate in the various socialist institutions. From this there
arise new questions and problems. The Islamic society of the Turkic
people had not prepared the latter to participate in a modern, industrial
society. They lacked the required educational background to be
usefully employable in the bureaucracy on any but a superficial level.
As a result non-Turkic cadres had to be used in many leading positions.
This raised the question of great Russian and Han-Chinese chauvinism.
Another problem was that of attacking the traditional Turkic way of life without alienating the Turkic people. The direct attack on
Islam was complex. In general both Governments demonstrated a lack of
understanding for the Islamic way of life. As a consequence they
launched an attack on an Islamic orthodoxy that did not exist. Also,
the Soviet policy of an outright attack forced the Soviet Government to
define a new way of life for the Kazakh and other Muslim people. In
China the need for this was avoided because of the less antagonistic
attitude towards Islam.
To a great extent this study compares the policies of the Soviet
and Chinese Governments. This in itself raises some questions. The
Russian revolution preceded the Chinese by nearly 32 years. This gave
the Chinese a considerable advantage. They did not have to make the
same mistakes that ha~ been made by the Soviet Union, particularly the
collectivisation drive in Kazakhstan. But the Chinese not only benefitted
from the Soviet mistakes. They'were able also to make use of
the advanced experience of the Soviet Union in advancing their economic
development programme. In addition the more industrially advanced
Soviet Union could and did assist the Chinese in their industrialisation.
From the discussion of the connection between the two countries
their logically follows an assessment of the inter-state relationship.
The intention is to discover to what extent the Turkic people influenced
the Sino-Soviet relationship. But the economic question hardly
can be excluded from the discussion. This in turn leads to the analysis
of some of the historical)-political, ideological and economic
causes of the Sino-Soviet rift.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DK Russia. Soviet Union. Former Soviet Republics
D History General and Old World > DS Asia
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences
Supervisor's Name: Adomeit, Dr. Hannes and Gray, Jack and Newth, John A.
Date of Award: 1980
Depositing User: Ms Mary Anne Meyering
Unique ID: glathesis:1980-5318
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 25 Jun 2014 15:10
Last Modified: 25 Jun 2014 15:12

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