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Post written by: Tom Mullaney
Thomas S. Mullaney is Associate Professor of Modern Chinese History at Stanford University, having received his Ph.D. in History in 2006 from Columbia University. He is the author of Coming to Terms with the Nation: Ethnic Classification in Modern China (University of California Press, 2011, Foreword by Benedict Anderson). This book charts the history of China’s 1954 Ethnic Classification project (minzu shibie), a joint social scientific-Communist state expedition wherein a group of ethnologists, linguists, and Party cadres traveled to the most ethnically diverse province in the People’s Republic to determine which minority communities would and would not be officially recognized by the state. He is also principal editor of Critical Han Studies: The History, Representation and Identity of China’s Majority, a pathbreaking volume that examines China’s majority ethnonational group. He is currently writing the first-ever global history of the Chinese typewriter, one of the most significant and misunderstood technological innovations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.