Chinese people are the various individuals or ethnic groups associated with China,usually through ancestry, ethnicity, nationality, citizenship or other affiliation. Han Chinese, the largest ethnic group in China, at about 92% of the population, are often referred to as "Chinese" or "ethnic Chinese" in English, however there are dozens of other related and unrelated ethnic groups in China.
China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia and the world's most populous country, with a population of around 1.404 billion. Covering approximately 9,600,000 square kilometers (3,700,000 sq mi), it is the third- or fourth-largest country by total area. Governed by the Communist Party of China, the state exercises jurisdiction over 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four direct-controlled municipalities, and the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau.
The Han Chinese, Hanzu, Han people, are an East Asian ethnic group and nation native to China. They constitute the world's largest ethnic group, making up about 18% of the global population. The estimated 1.3 billion Han Chinese people are mostly concentrated in mainland China and in Taiwan. Han Chinese people also make up three quarters of the total population of Singapore.
An ethnic group or an ethnicity, is a category of people who identify with each other based on similarities such as common ancestry, language, history, society, culture or nation. Ethnicity is usually an inherited status based on the society in which one lives. Membership of an ethnic group tends to be defined by a shared cultural heritage, ancestry, origin myth, history, homeland, language or dialect, symbolic systems such as religion, mythology and ritual, cuisine, dressing style, art or physical appearance.
A number of ethnic groups within China, as well as people elsewhere with ancestry in the region, may be referred to as Chinese people.
Han Chinese people, the largest ethnic group in China, are often referred to as "Chinese" or "ethnic Chinese" in English.The ethnic Chinese also form a majority or notable minority in other countries, and may comprise as much as 19% of the global human population.
Other ethnic groups in China include the related Hui people or "Chinese Muslims", the Zhuang, Manchu, Uyghurs and Miao, who make up the five largest ethnic minorities in mainland China with populations exceeding 10 million. In addition, the Yi, Tujia, Tibetans and Mongols each number populations between six and nine million.
The Hui people are an East Asian ethnoreligious group predominantly composed of ethnically Sinitic adherents of the Muslim faith found throughout China, mainly in the northwestern provinces of the country and the Zhongyuan region. According to the 2011 census, China is home to approximately 10.5 million Hui people, the majority of whom are Chinese-speaking practitioners of Islam, though some may practise other religions. The 110,000 Dungan people of Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan are also considered part of the Hui ethnicity.
The Zhuang people are an ethnic group who mostly live in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region in southern China. Some also live in the Yunnan, Guangdong, Guizhou and Hunan provinces. They form one of the 56 ethnic groups officially recognized by the People's Republic of China. With the Buyi, Tay–Nùng, and other northern Tai speakers, they are sometimes known as the Rau or Rao. Their population, estimated at 18 million people, makes them the largest minority in China.
The Manchu are an ethnic minority in China and the people from whom Manchuria derives its name. They are sometimes called "red-tasseled Manchus", a reference to the ornamentation on traditional Manchu hats. The Later Jin (1616–1636), and Qing dynasty (1636–1912) were established and ruled by Manchus, who are descended from the Jurchen people who earlier established the Jin dynasty (1115–1234) in China.
The People's Republic of China (PRC) officially recognizes 56 distinct ethnic groups, many of whom live in the special administrative regions of the country. However, there exists several smaller ethnicities who are "unrecognized" or subsumed as part another ethnic group. The Republic of China (ROC or commonly Taiwan) officially recognizes 14 tribes of Taiwanese aborigines, who together with unrecognized tribes comprise about 2% of the country's population.
Special administrative region is a designation for types of administrative territorial entities in China, North Korea and Indonesia.
Several ethnic groups of the People's Republic of China are not officially recognized. Taken together, these groups number more than 730,000 people; if considered as a single group, they would constitute the twentieth most populous ethnic group of China. Some scholars have estimated that there are over 200 distinct ethnic groups that inhabit China. There are in addition small distinct ethnic groups that have been classified as part of larger ethnic groups that are officially recognized. Some groups like the Hui of Xinjiang with the Hui of Fujian are geographically and culturally separate except for the shared belief of Islam. Han Chinese being the world's largest ethnic group has a large diversity within it, such as in Gansu, the Han here may have genetic traits from the assimilated Tangut civilization. Although they are indigenous to Hainan island and do not speak a Chinese language, the Limgao (Ong-Be) people near the capital are counted as Han Chinese.
Taiwan, officially the Republic of China (ROC), is a state in East Asia. Neighbouring states include the People's Republic of China (PRC) to the west, Japan to the northeast, and the Philippines to the south. Taiwan is the most populous state and largest economy that is not a member of the United Nations (UN).
During the Qing dynasty the term "Chinese people" (Chinese: 中國之人 Zhōngguó zhī rén; Manchu: Dulimbai gurun i niyalma) was used by the Qing government to refer to all subjects of the empire, including Han, Manchu, and Mongols.
The Qing dynasty, officially the Great Qing, was the last imperial dynasty of China. It was established in 1636, and ruled China proper from 1644 to 1912. It was preceded by the Ming dynasty and succeeded by the Republic of China. The Qing multi-cultural empire lasted for almost three centuries and formed the territorial base for modern China. It was the fifth largest empire in world history. The dynasty was founded by the Manchu Aisin Gioro clan in Manchuria. In the late sixteenth century, Nurhaci, originally a Ming Jianzhou Guard vassal, began organizing "Banners", military-social units that included Manchu, Han, and Mongol elements. Nurhaci formed the Manchu clans into a unified entity. By 1636, his son Hong Taiji began driving Ming forces out of the Liaodong Peninsula and declared a new dynasty, the Qing.
Zhonghua minzu (simplified Chinese :中华民族; traditional Chinese :中華民族; pinyin :Zhōnghuá Mínzú), the "Chinese nation", is a supra-ethnic concept which includes all 56 ethnic groups living in China that are officially recognized by the government of the People's Republic of China. It includes established ethnic groups who have lived within the borders of China since at least the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911). The term zhonghua minzu was used during the Republic of China from 1911–1949 to refer to a subset of five ethnic groups in China. The term zhongguo renmin (Chinese :中国人民), "Chinese people", was the government's preferred term during the life of Mao Zedong; zhonghua minzu is more common in recent decades.
The Nationality law of the People's Republic of China regulates nationality within the PRC. A person obtains nationality either by birth when at least one parent is of Chinese nationality or by naturalization. All people holding nationality of the People's Republic of China are citizens of the Republic.The Resident Identity Card is the official form of identification for residents of the People's Republic of China.
Within the People's Republic of China, a Hong Kong Special Administrative Region passport or Macao Special Administrative Region passport may be issued to permanent residents of Hong Kong or Macao, respectively.
The Nationality law of the Republic of China regulates nationality within the Republic of China (Taiwan). A person obtains nationality either by birth or by naturalization. A person with at least one parent who is a national of the Republic of China, or born in the ROC to stateless parents qualifies for nationality by birth.
The National Identification Card is an identity document issued to people who have household registration in Taiwan. The Resident Certificate is an identification card issued to residents of the Republic of China who do not hold a National Identification Card.
The relationship between Taiwanese nationality and Chinese nationality is disputed.
Overseas Chinese refers to people of Chinese ethnicity or national heritage who live outside the People's Republic of China or Taiwan as the result of the continuing diaspora.People with one or more Chinese ancestors may consider themselves overseas Chinese. Such people vary widely in terms of cultural assimilation. In some areas throughout the world ethnic enclaves known as Chinatowns are home to populations of Chinese ancestry.
In Southeast Asia, Chinese people call themselves 華人 (Huárén), which is distinguished from (中國人) (Zhōngguórén) or the citizens of the People's Republic of China or the Republic of China.This is especially so in the Chinese communities of Southeast Asia. The term Zhongguoren has a more political or ideological aspect in its use; while many in China may use Zhongguoren to mean the Chinese ethnicity, some in Taiwan would refuse to be called Zhongguoren.
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Other countries with Chinese populations
Related topics of interest
Chinese can refer to:
Overseas Chinese are people of ethnic Chinese birth or descent who reside outside the territories of Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. Although a vast majority are Han Chinese, the group represents virtually all ethnic groups in China.
China proper, Inner China or the Eighteen Provinces was a term used by Western writers on the Manchu Qing dynasty to express a distinction between the core and frontier regions of China. There is no fixed extent for China proper, as many administrative, cultural, and linguistic shifts have occurred in Chinese history. One definition refers to the original area of Chinese civilization, the Central Plain ; another to the "Eighteen Provinces" system of the Qing dynasty. There is no direct translation for "China proper" in the Chinese language due to differences in terminology used by the Qing to refer to the regions and the expression is controversial among scholars, particularly in China, due to national territorial claims.
Inner Mongolia or Nei Mongol, officially the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region or Nei Mongol Autonomous Region (NMAR), is one of the autonomous regions of the People's Republic of China, located in the north of the country. Its border includes most of the length of China's border with Mongolia. The rest of the Sino–Mongolian border coincides with part of the international border of the Xinjiang autonomous region and the entirety of the international border of Gansu province and a small section of China's border with Russia. Its capital is Hohhot; other major cities include Baotou, Chifeng, and Ordos.
Ethnic groups in Chinese history refer to various or presumed ethnicities of significance to the history of China, gathered through the study of Classical Chinese literature, Chinese and non-Chinese literary sources and inscriptions, historical linguistics, and archaeological research.
Ethnic minorities in China are the non-Han Chinese population in the People's Republic of China (PRC). China officially recognizes 55 ethnic minority groups within China in addition to the Han majority. As of 2010, the combined population of officially recognized minority groups comprised 8.49% of the population of mainland China. In addition to these officially recognized ethnic minority groups, there are Chinese nationals who privately classify themselves as members of unrecognized ethnic groups.
Chinese nationalism is the form of nationalism in China which asserts that the Chinese people are a nation and promotes the cultural and national unity of the Chinese.
The names of China include the many contemporary and historical appellations given in various languages for the East Asian country known as Zhōngguó (中國/中国) in its official language. China, the name in English for the country, was derived from Portuguese in the 16th century, and became popular in the mid 19th century. It is believed to be a borrowing from Middle Persian, and some have traced it further back to Sanskrit. It is also generally thought that the ultimate source of the name China is the Chinese word "Qin", the name of the dynasty that unified China but also existed as a state for many centuries prior. There are, however, other alternative suggestions for the origin of the word.
Han chauvinism is a term coined by Mao Zedong on March 16, 1953, to criticize ethnocentrism among the majority Han people of China. In a party directive drafted for the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party titled "Criticize Han Chauvinism", Mao said, "In some places the relations between nationalities are far from normal. For Communists this is an intolerable situation. We must go to the root and criticize the Han chauvinist ideas which exist to a serious degree among many Party members and cadres ..."
Minzu University of China is a national-level university in Haidian District, Beijing, China designated for ethnic minorities in China. Minzu University is the top university in China for ethnic minorities. It aims to be one of the best universities of its kind in the world. With the strong support of Chinese government, it has developed rapidly over the years. MUC is one of the most prestigious universities in China in ethnology, anthropology, ethnic economies, regional economics, religion studies, history, dance, and fine arts.
Huaxia is a historical concept representing the Chinese nation and civilization. It came forth out of a self-awareness of the Han Chinese people towards their ancestral tribes, collectively known as the Huaxia.
Taiwanese people are people from Taiwan who share a common Taiwanese culture and speak Mandarin Chinese, Hokkien, Hakka, or Aboriginal languages as a mother tongue. Taiwanese people may also refer to individuals who either claim or are imputed cultural identity focused on Taiwan or areas under the control of the Government of the Republic of China since 1945, including Penghu, Kinmen, and Matsu islands. At least three competing paradigms are used to identify someone as a Taiwanese person: nationalist criteria, self-identification criteria, and socio-cultural criteria. These standards are fluid, and result from evolving social and political issues. The complexity resulting from competing and evolving standards is compounded by a larger dispute regarding Taiwan's identity, the political status of Taiwan, and its potential de jure Taiwan independence or Cross-Strait Unification.
The State Ethnic Affairs Commission of the People's Republic of China (SEAC) is a cabinet-level department under the State Council of the People's Republic of China and responsible for relations between the Central Government and ethnic minorities in China.
The definition of 'Taiwanese' identity has been an ongoing issue for several decades arising from the political rivalry between Taiwan, and the People's Republic of China (PRC). People from Taiwan are frustrated by the political rivalry which is the cause of confusion in people's national identity, both inside and outside Taiwan. According to government figures, over 95% of Taiwan's population of 23.4 million consists of Han Chinese, while 2.3% are Austronesian Taiwanese aborigines. The category of Han Chinese consists of the three main groups: Hoklo, Hakka, and mainland Chinese. The identify of whether a person from Taiwan is 'Taiwanese', or Chinese, is more of a political question.
De-Sinicization is the elimination of Chinese culture.
Zhonghua minzu, translated as "Chinese nation" or "Chinese ethnicities", is a key political term that is entwined with modern Chinese history of nation-building and race.