Briefs | Analyses n°19 – The Uyghur Issue: Beyond Human Rights

Briefs | Analyses n°19 – The Uyghur Issue: Beyond Human Rights


In an insightful interview, anthropologist Darren Byler exposes why the Uyghur’s oppression system is colonial, how the "terror" rhetoric is used to justify this exploitation, and why it is not ethno-racial hatred but economic interests that drive the system. He shows how the repression of Uyghurs is related to China’s goal to lead the world in artificial intelligence development and what this portends for the future of surveillance.

Senior Lecturer in China Studies Vanessa Frangville analyses Uyghur popular cultural production before and after 2018 to assess the extent of the ongoing repression and to understand if and how Uyghurs can speak back, or not, to the Chinese State. In this issue, she dissects a popular Uyghur series: Anar Pishti.

Both papers were written following the authors’ talks at the EURICS/IFRAE/Université de Liège webinar on Capitalism, Regimes of Surveillance, and the Covid-19 Pandemics: Lessons From China and Beyond on December 16, 2021.

Interview by Aurélie Louchart.