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In recent historical studies of modern East Asia, the issue of migration has received increased scholarly attention. This article traces recent historiographical and methodological trends by analyzing influential English-language works on modern East Asian migrations in the first half of the twentieth century. Modern East Asian migrations during this period present dynamic and heterogeneous features as results of modern social transformations, such as the development of global capitalism, national and global economic integration, the emergence of new transportation and communication technology, and the expansion and collapse of the Japanese empire. Accordingly, the historical works on modern East Asian migrations we examine display a variety of historiographical and theoretical approaches. Specifically, this article underscores important trends or comparable emphases in these studies, including the growing scholarly interest in transnational/regional border crossing movements, migrants’ subject formations in the new environments, and the methodological interest in the role of culture, political economy, and the environment. Thus this article offers a reflective overview of the ongoing development of migration studies centering on modern East Asia.

This article analyzes recent studies of modern migrations related to East Asia. With migration among the issues that have received increasing attention from East Asian Studies scholars, research on migration reflects recent methodological developments in the historical study of East Asia and directs our attention to a significant rise in interdisciplinary and global concerns among scholars.

Migration itself has been an important topic in international history, world history, and, recently, global history. The great migratory currents since 1500 C.E. have been examined as sinews that connect continents, helping to create the political, social, and ethnic landscapes of the world today. Over the past decade, migrations of the twentieth century have drawn world historians’ attention. 1 They believe the mass migrations of this period, which began in the mid-nineteenth century, reflect a striking and unprecedented increase in the human population, industrial and agricultural production, global trade and its shift to non-luxury commodities, in international capital flows, in transcontinental economic integration, and in transportation and communication technology. 2 These upsurges and the resulting regional unevenness created incentives for long-distance migrations as well as the resources and technologies that made them possible. In turn, these migrations provided the labor and markets that made these upsurges in production, integration, and flows possible. In such a periodization, migration that runs from the middle of the nineteenth century into the twentieth century has been classed as “modern” because it is unprecedented in its volume and temporal concentration. 3

Global migration increased dramatically from the 1840s to the 1870s, slowed a bit following a global depression from 1873 until the early 1890s, reached new peaks in the years up to 1914, shrank during World War I, revived during the 1920s, and contracted again with the Great Depression of the 1930s and World War II, except for internal migrations and refugees. 4 Under such global rubrics, historians of East Asia have recorded the increasing flow of populations in East Asia during this “modern” period as well. In the case of Japan, following its integration into the modern world system in the late nineteenth century, overseas emigration increased dramatically. In 1940, more than 2.5 million Japanese people lived in colonies or areas under Japanese rule such as Korea, Taiwan, South Sakhalin, Kangtung, Manchuria, and the South Pacific, and 40,000 lived in the Americas. Meanwhile, populations also flowed from the colonies to the metropole, including two million Koreans to mainland Japan at the end of World War II. 5 China saw rising population movements as well. The nearly two million Chinese who arrived in Singapore from 1925 to 1930 equaled or exceeded the total number of Chinese who migrated to mainland Southeast Asia over the three centuries prior to 1820. 6

Mindful of the longer historical pattern of and trends in migration and forms of mobility since the beginning of the twentieth century, we pay particular attention to recent historical research on domestic and transnational migrations of people in East Asia in the first half of the twentieth century. This time period not only covers the important phase of the rise of modern population movements in and out of East Asia but also informs newly developing scholarly approaches and perspectives.

As indicated in long-term migratory patterns and all forms of mobility, the period between 1900 and 1950 was marked by several peaks of international, inter-Asian, and domestic human movements, which represented a significant shift in volume and, more importantly, in patterns when compared with the nineteenth century. World historians have noted that the feminization of migration characterized the entire twentieth century. The gender shift contrasted with heavily male migrations in the context of the nineteenth-century global economy and urbanization that fueled the development of the textile and service industries. Also, in the first half of the twentieth century, modern nation-states increasingly sought to control, manage, and govern massive and formerly largely unregulated migrations by controlling their international borders and limiting rights to residency and work. The turn toward regulation of migration was, in part, a growing nationalist reaction against transnational integration that produced, historians argue, the great age of nationalism. 7 Meanwhile, within the Japanese empire, the government's involvement in migration policy also contributed to the expansion of the empire. While not forced to move, as were early modern slaves, early twentieth-century migrants navigated their choices and plans in a rather complicated web of capitalism, nation-state building, colonialism/imperialism, two World Wars, and revolution to fulfill their desire for survival and their striving for modern life under new political ideals.

Since the Japanese empire and China combined covered the extent of East Asia during much of the first half of the twentieth century, this article traces important developments in historical studies of migration in and out of East Asia by addressing recent works related to Japanese (Empire) Studies and Chinese Studies. We particularly explore recent English-language studies, primarily books. Instead of creating a comprehensive list of recent works, our goal in examining historical studies of migration is not only to explore this new trend in migration studies but also, more importantly, to explore the historiographical and theoretical frameworks through which scholars have engaged with these historical studies, so as to highlight how, in the newly emerging fields of migration studies and transnational/Pacific studies, the history of East Asia is being written and rewritten in the twenty-first century.


In a recent article Louise Young points out the impact of the cultural and transnational turn in Japanese historiography over the past two decades. Many scholars have focused on “informal social interactions between Japanese and others; the circulation of ideas across national borders; the transculturation of literary, linguistic, and architectural form; and hybridity as a product of cultural interactions in the crucible of empire.” 8 Among the consequences of this turn is a growing body of literature on the Japanese empire and colonialism, with respect to which the migration of people within the empire is a crucial topic as it invokes cultural and social contacts involving an increasingly diverse population. Meanwhile, the study of migrations out of the Japanese empire and of incoming migrants from outside the Japanese empire has been developing dynamically in recent years. Unlike past research on migrations between city and village, current transnational studies of migrations and empire must articulate issues involving racial and ethnic tensions. Recently published edited collections on migration or transnational approaches concerning populations in the Japanese empire reflect a broad perspective, but our examination of some representative and unique works will outline the contours of the study of modern migration in and around the empire. 9

Contemporary Japanese empire studies have made the impact of population movements to the colonies a prominent topic. Although the social and cultural impact of Japanese migrations to the colonies has been only a minor research topic (excepting Japanese migration to Manchuria), more recent studies open our eyes to the complicated effects of colonizers’ migrations by examining the life of Japanese settlers in the colonies. 10 Jun Uchida's Brokers of Empire (2011) is a representative case illustrating this approach. 11 Uchida's study traces the history of Japanese settlers in Korea from the late nineteenth century to the end of World War II and introduces the perspective of settler colonialism. Unlike the imperial expansion, which relied on indigenous power or chartered companies, settler colonialism implicates the distinct role of settler societies in migratory expansion. According to Uchida, settler colonialism is a term conventionally applied to British white dominions or African colonies, but she expands its scope to include East Asia. 12 In doing so, she not only unravels the role of settler societies in the Japanese empire but also challenges the view that simply conflates the role of the state with that of settlers. She shows complicated transnational/regional dynamism, as exemplified by the four-way relationship between an imperial metropole, a local administration, an indigenous population, and a settler community. 13 By the end of Japan's era of colonization, Korea was home to over 700,000 Japanese civilians, including not only officials but also merchants, journalists, educators, prostitutes, and continental adventurers. Uchida examines the historical role of these Japanese settlers in ambivalent relationships with the Japanese imperial regime and Koreans.

Providing an important lesson derived from the study of settler colonialists’ experiences, Uchida's work clarifies the gap in perspectives between the colonial state and the colonizers. In other words, Uchida focuses on non-negligible tensions between Japanese settlers in Korea and state policymakers. For example, when the Governor-General of Korea tried to end the settlers’ self-governance following the annexation of Korea in 1910, he triggered protests in the settler community. Living in the colony, settlers from the Japanese mainland lost their right to vote in national elections because that right was given based on the principle of residency. Therefore, within the Japanese imperial system, settlers were put in an ambiguous position and came into conflict with the state. Uchida calls the source of this tension a “cognitive gap: whereas settlers saw themselves as partners in governance, the state treated them as interlopers.” 14

In addition to exploring tensions between the state and settlers, Uchida also addresses phenomena of power formation between settlers and Koreans. In fact, the settlers’ conflict with the state cannot be examined separately from ethnic relationships in the colony. As Uchida observes, Japanese settlers justified their demand for rights as civilized subjects by contrasting themselves with Koreans, who were labeled as uncivilized subjects of low intellect. 15 Living in a contiguous space, the encounter with the colonized is a crucial condition of colonial subject formation and this work traces fluctuating colonial ethnic relationships, including collaboration with Korean elites. Emphasizing the concept of “liminality” to describe the ambivalent condition of Japanese settlers in colonial Korea, Uchida's study reflects theoretical perspectives in cultural and postcolonial studies presented in the works of Ann Stoler and Homi Bhabha. 16 Such a perspective reveals the variety of anxieties and aspirations that formed part of the background of settlers’ engagements in political and social reform, whether they were engaged in collaboration with or discrimination against Koreans.

While successfully decentralizing the state-centered view of colonial power, Uchida's focus on settler colonialism also opens up the study of the Japanese empire and migrations to a comparative perspective. Uchida compares Japanese settler activities in Korea with the French and British cases and addresses some differences between Japanese and European settler colonialism, in particular the relative weakness of the legal and economic status of the Japanese settlers. 17 Such insights have helped refine our understanding of Japanese imperialism and develop the study of migrations, colonialism, and empire in East Asia on a global scale.

The movements of people between the metropole and the periphery within the empire are also important topics for gender history. Barbara J. Brooks's article explores the role of gender at the edges of the Japanese empire, particularly in Korea and Manchuria, by analyzing journals published in Japanese colonies. 18 The movement of women is a significant component of the modern history of Japanese migrations. Brooks emphasizes that, compared with other imperial experiences, the one under Japanese imperialism stands out for the large number of females who migrated to disparate parts of the empire, calling their distribution “far more far-flung and interior.” 19 The experiences of Japanese sex workers and women in the “entertainment” business overseas in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries – the so-called “karayuki-san” or “joshigun” – were brought to light in Yamazaki Tomoko's popular work. 20 While Yamazaki's work focuses geographically on Southeast Asia and North America, Brooks points out the enormous presence of Japanese women in Northeast Asia and the Japanese colonies. According to Brooks, these scattered women were regarded by some writers as a vanguard of the expansion of the Japanese empire and their “sacrifice” was honored. 21

Brooks also examines how female Japanese settlers were involved in the everyday politics of boundary-making between colonizers and colonized in Japanese colonies. In regard to this problematic explored by scholars such as Ann Stoler, Brooks pays attention to the functions of discourses of hygiene, biomedicine, and modernity and articulates the role of women as agents of modernity in colonial society. Thus her examination connects the analysis of gendered constructions of society with female migrations in East Asia.

Meanwhile, works on Japanese overseas population movements have also developed a unique perspective. In addition to a traditional focus on migration to North America, recent studies have begun covering the history of migration to Latin America, including recent edited volumes featuring a broader identity category, which covers dispersed populations such as the Japanese diaspora or Nikkei (people of Japanese descent). 22 Furthermore, transpacific studies of migration have recently linked the history of overseas migrations to the examination of the formation of the Japanese empire as well. In regard to this point, Eiichiro Azuma's Between Two Empires (2005) examines Japanese overseas migrants’ relationship with the home country and opens up a new perspective. 23 Azuma's work traces the historical experiences and subject formation of Japanese migrants in the United States during the first half of the twentieth century. Although there is a growing body of historiography associated with Japanese migrations to the United States, the study of such migrants has often focused on life in the host country and is therefore categorized as American or Asian American history. However, Azuma keeps his eyes on the transnational connections and interactions that Japanese migrants retained across the Pacific, representing one possible perspective to inform the development of transpacific historiography. 24

Azuma's book begins by examining early Japanese migrations and settlements in the United States at the turn of the century within the context of both the development of the Japanese empire and American westward territorial expansion. From the beginning it is quite clear that Azuma places the history of Japanese migrations at the intersection of this “neglected imperialist rivalry.” 25 In that sense, this work integrates the analysis of racial formation in the United States and the ideological formation of the Japanese empire.

For example, Azuma's analysis of efforts on the part of the first generation of Japanese migrant elites to inculcate ideal citizen subject formation at the beginning of the twentieth century displays some of the migrants’ practices in transnational interactions. On the one hand, Japanese migrant leaders, in alliance with the Japanese diplomatic corps, institutionalized a migrant control mechanism and tried to form the masses of migrant workers into civilized imperial subjects through moral reform in response to the anti-Japanese movement on the American West Coast. On the other hand, this effort also resonated with the Progressive movement in the United States, which aimed to inscribe bourgeois middle-class civility on immigrant workers based on a modernization-like hierarchy. Thus his approach reveals encounters between multiple actors and ideas as a result of migrant movements in this transnational space.

Azuma's work also reveals the migrants’ continuous interactions with the home country, such as participation in transnational educational programs that involve sending second-generation children to Japanese schools as well as patriotic support for the empire through making donations. Although the study emphasizes how such transnational activities have been conditioned by local or American politics, it offers insight into how much impact a transnational perspective had on Japanese migrants’ everyday practices.

Thus Azuma's Between Two Empires already indicates a possible link between the history of overseas Japanese migrations and Japanese empire studies. In later work Azuma explores this connection in greater depth and reveals how the experience of Japanese migrants in the United States was later appropriated by Japanese imperialists to support and promote Japanese colonial migrations to Manchuria in the 1930s. 26 The examination also clarifies the Japanese empire's attempt to create a relationship between overseas Japanese migrations and the integrative and expansive ideology of the wartime Japanese empire. 27

So far we have mentioned recent studies of Japanese settler populations in the colonies and overseas migrations, but the history of migrations to the Japanese mainland has also been an important research topic. In particular, Korean and Okinawan migrations to the Japanese mainland from the early to the mid-twentieth century have been discussed extensively, often in relation to the experience of oppression. 28 A recent book sheds new light on the study of such migrants to the Japanese mainland by focusing on the Chinese ethnic community there. Eric Han's Rise of a Japanese Chinatown (2014) traces the historical formation of an ethnic community in the city of Yokohama from the late nineteenth century to the 1970s. 29 Yokohama is the second-largest city in Japan and is located only seventeen miles from Tokyo, serving historically as a treaty port during the nineteenth century. It has been regarded as one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the country and Yokohama's Chinatown is now an important symbol of the city. Han's study explores the historical background of the presence of Chinese culture and reveals how migrants formed collective identities in changing circumstances.

Han's work covers a variety of events over a long span of time, but his core interest in this research is identity. Against a one-dimensional view of identity, he explores the function of multiple identifications in what he called a “diasporic” condition. 30 In conclusion, he reveals the historical emergence of a local, “Yokohama-ite” identity among Chinese migrants and its function as a channel for inclusion that operated separately from national identity. In Han's exploration of collective identity formation in a migrant community, what is important is the migrants’ constant negotiation and interaction with the home country as well as nationalism. Han describes, for example, how earlier migrants with no clear conceptualization of the Chinese nation started developing patriotism around the turn of the century in the context of the intervention of Chinese expatriate activists such as Kang Youwei, Liang Qichao, and Sun Yatsen. Although this did not comprehensively change the minds of the migrants, Han's analysis shows how significantly transnational ties affected local migrant practices.

The control over overseas Chinese exercised by the Republic of China had developed through the 1920s and 1930s and the solidification of a Chinese identity as huaqiao occurred. Nevertheless, Han traces the remaining attachments to local place among Chinese migrants in Yokohama. This gap between national and local identities becomes quite important when Han examines the meaning of Yokohama Chinese wartime collaboration with the Japanese state under “slogans of Sino-Japanese amity.” 31 As Japanese authorities tried to integrate Yokohama Chinese as a nationalized huaqiao community, Han reveals the role of local identity that underlies their practices. Thus Han's study gives us insight not only into the impact of the transnational movement of leaders and ideas on migrants but also into the role of local identity developed within the host society.

Despite their disparate approaches, the above-mentioned works taken together highlight a shared interest in national or ethnic subject formation working in the social and cultural sphere. Meanwhile, other recent works approach phenomena of migrations in and around the Japanese empire by focusing more specifically on the role of political economy. Ken Kawashima's The Proletarian Gamble (2009) and Hyun Ok Park's Two Dreams in One Bed (2005) are good examples of such an approach. 32 While the former examines the migration of Korean workers to the Japanese mainland during the interwar years, the latter traces the experiences of Korean migrants in Manchuria during the first half of the twentieth century. Both works broadly share a similar concern, that is, they focus attention on the crucial role of capitalism in the formation of the empire or nation-state. Thus their work develops key analytical concepts and issues in Marxist historiography such as primitive accumulation, the formation of a private property system, surplus populations, and commodification of labor power and land.

Kawashima focuses on the precariousness of Korean migrant day workers in Japan, comparing their plight to some extent to that of flexible laborers in a post-Fordist situation. He locates this contingency in the general process of the commodification of labor power initiated by primitive accumulation. Through this process, a free worker is able to realize his or her labor capacity by selling his or her labor power as a commodity but without any practical guarantee and, in the words of Marx, as a “virtual pauper.” 33 Kawashima's work integrates such a theoretical perspective with the analysis of the actual function of Japanese housing and labor markets for Korean migrants and explores the historical conditions of the Korean colonial working class in interwar Japan.

This approach draws attention not simply to the suffering and poverty of colonial workers in Japan but also to the anguished anxiety and uncertainty they experienced in the everyday process of searching for wage-based work. According to Kawashima's analysis, the racism of the Japanese empire functioned precisely in this process of uncertainties. Kawashima introduces, for example, a particular form of exploitation of migrant workers that differs from exploitation in the factory system. This system of exploitation, “intermediary exploitation,” works through the intervention of institutional agents who mediated the sales and purchase of Korean labor power and subtracted commission fees from normal wages in compensation for labor introduction. During the interwar years, a large percentage of Korean workers in major cities on the Japanese mainland were day workers. In 1930, among 20,000 employed Korean workers in Tokyo, almost 85 percent were day workers, typically working in the public works industry, their insecure status being exploited by intermediary agents.

In addition to analyzing the exploitation of migrants in the empire, Kawashima's work also explores imperial efforts to integrate the multi-ethnic empire and workers’ struggles against such integration. This power relationship became visible in his analysis of the role of the Korean welfare organization Sōaiakai, which Kawashima calls a “para-police force,” and the Korean workers’ countermovement. Thus Kawashima applies the perspective of political economy to the study of multi-ethnic imperial formation.

Park also emphasizes the role of capitalism in her study of migrants’ experiences. She treats the history of Korean migration, mostly involving landless peasants escaping poverty, to areas in South and East Manchuria such as Fengtian and Kando, and considers their social life at the intersection of nationalism, colonialism, and capitalism, which she regarded as a “primary determinant” of social relations in Manchuria. 34 Kando is a border region and Park's examination of migrant life sheds light on specific elements of political economy, including the formation of a private property system.

Since the 1900s, Koreans have comprised more than two-thirds of the total population of Kando, and both Japanese and Chinese authorities have been concerned with their presence in this region. For the Japanese empire, these Korean migrants were important imperial subjects who could expand the power of the empire across the border from colonial Korea to Manchuria. Park calls this transnational function of Korean migrants in the formation of the Japanese empire an “osmotic” diffusion of Japan's power in contrast with the conventional scholarly articulations of formal and informal forms of Japanese imperialism. 35 Meanwhile, whereas Chinese authorities regarded migrants in Manchuria as the vanguard of Japanese imperialism, the migrants’ farming skills could not be easily dismissed. Thus the politics of inclusion and exclusion regarding Koreans varied with local conditions, and the border politics of membership is entwined with the issue of land ownership. In this way, Park reveals the tension between national and capitalist desires in the border politics of migrations.

Park also examines the function of capitalism and Japan's desire for territorial sovereignty following the Manchurian Incident in 1931. She traces in particular the development of Manchurian cooperatives based on the idea of agrarian communitarianism that emerged in the metropole during the 1920s and 1930s in response to the expansion of capitalism. Seeking to reorder unstable social relations after the Manchurian Incident, the colonial powers relied on this idea and tried to resolve the crisis by integrating immigrants into agrarian cooperatives. Although this agrarianism was a response to the crisis of capitalism, it did not solve the fundamental problem. According to Park, Manchuria was rather deeply integrated into a “capitalist chain.” 36 Furthermore, despite the ideal of harmony in Manchuria, she reveals, these agrarian cooperatives retained inequalities between ethnic groups that were manifested, for example, in differences in loan interest rates for Korean and Japanese borrowers. Thus, by focusing on the history of migrants in contested territory and in dynamically developed land in Northeast Asia, Park effectively reveals the production of the mechanism of hierarchy in an empire in parallel to the expansion of capitalism. 37

The works to which we have referred so far address migrations in and out of the Japanese empire. Meanwhile, the collapse of the Japanese empire created new population flows. Although analyzing historical studies of migration during the latter half of the twentieth century is beyond the scope of this article, some recent works touch on population movements during the Allied occupation (1945–1952).

Lori Watt's When Empire Comes Home (2009) is one of the first comprehensive English works on the social and cultural impact of the Japanese repatriation from colonies and battlefields to the mainland after World War II, a topic that has increasingly captured scholarly attention. After this war, more than six million Japanese citizens and soldiers returned to the Japanese mainland. The degree and timing of their repatriation varied, depending on the historical circumstances and Allied countries’ commitments. Watt's study covers a lengthy time span – into the 1980s – in order to trace the long-standing impact of repatriation on Japanese society.

Watt focuses in this book in part on the way the image of the “repatriate (hikiagesha)” had been created as a domestic “other,” through which what she calls “postwar anxieties” emerge. 38 This creation of the image of the “repatriate” had already started in the late 1940s and, interestingly, it was not a one-way labeling process. Watt clarifies that such returnees “challenge, modify, and in some cases accept the categorization of hikiagesha.” 39 By forming a self-help group and circulating publications, they sought to make their experiences visible or lobbied for redress in seeking to reacquire lost assets. Thus Watt addresses the hegemonic process of returnees’ subject formations.

Whereas Watt's work reveals discrepancies in the national imaginary caused by repatriation immediately after the war, it is also important to remember that this process ran parallel to the formation of a Cold War regime in East Asia and the emergence of new migration control mechanisms in Japan. Tessa Morris-Suzuki's Borderline Japan (2010) explores this point and reveals the politics of border-making and the little-known experiences of border crossings into Japan after World War II. 40 As Morris-Suzuki emphasizes, it was during the Allied occupation that the centralized migration control services were established in Japan.

The book not only traces this new formation of migration control but also sheds light on the history of border crossings of undocumented migrants, particularly of people moving between Japan and Korea for multiple and mixed motives such as rejoining family in Japan and escaping the Korean War. While Koreans and Taiwanese in Japan were abruptly turned into foreigners after the occupation, the migrants who were detected and arrested were incarcerated in the Ōmura Detention Center, what Morris-Suzuki calls “modern limbo.” This place becomes a symbolic site of multiple contestations such as the conflict between the Japanese state and its former colonial subjects, the conflict between Japan and South Korea, and the conflict between North and South Korea. Thus Morris-Suzuki shows how the discrimination problem in the empire persisted with variations in the new Cold War environment.

What is also exceptional about this work is its attention to the Allied military forces as the subjects of cross-border movements. Despite their massive presence in East Asia after the war, migration history does not seriously take their movements into account. However, as US military forces were exempt from Japanese immigration procedures and requirements, their privileged status marked a clear contrast to the situation of undocumented migrations and revealed the broader structure of the system of border crossings under the Cold War regime in East Asia. In that sense, Morris-Suzuki's work reminds us of the importance of examining multi-layered power functions in studies of migrations and border control.

Crossing conventional disciplinary boundaries, then, recent studies on historical migration in and out of the Japanese empire or occupied Japan address a variety of issues and perspectives. Works on migrants within the imperial territory unavoidably turn our attention to their relation to the mechanism of imperial hegemony and the heterogeneous experiences of liminality. Unlike traditional West/non-West binary views, these works show the comparability of the phenomena affecting migrants’ experiences to those in other historical empires. Also, studies of the transition of migration control during the Allied occupation and new patterns of mobility address the specific power formations in East Asia that arose after World War II. Furthermore, transpacific migration studies not only show the possibility of deconstructing the regional boundary of historical studies but also bring together studies of empires facing one another across the Pacific. In the next section, we review research on modern migration in and out of China and also discuss the development and focus of transnational and interdisciplinary research.


Recent research on migration in and out of the Japanese empire in the first half of the twentieth century has become the direct reference and historical context for studies of migration within China's territory, a way to reinforce the colonial history of Japan in Manchuria and northeast China, especially in the post-World War I years when Japan seized the German colony in China and Manzhouguo was established. Research on migration in and out of China in the first half of the twentieth century has manifested a pattern similar to that of the Japanese experience, as the period marked the formation of the modern nation-state and the emergence of global capitalism, in which urbanization, (gendered) labor migration, and primitive accumulation of capital emerged and thrived, especially after World War I. Methodologically, these recent studies of migration in China and Japan during the period share a comparable theoretical interest in transnational historiography and the relationship between migration and the central state's expansion of power.

In the US before 2000, historical studies of migration within China's territory have served as a secondary field to urban history, labor history, and the history of gender and feminist movements (female migrant workers). Historical research on China's modernization of major cities in the early twentieth century, as in the cases of Shanghai and Tianjin, has long presented an image of cities of sojourners and immigrants who retained strong ties to their native places in China's largest metropolises. 41 Although Shanghai and Tianjin were already trading centers of note prior to the Opium War, the arrival of Western traders heightened the influx of merchants and labor groups from the outside. These outsiders formed native-place groups (tongxianghui 同鄉會) that played a prominent and visible role in the two cities during rapid development early in the century from the time Shanghai opened as a treaty port until World War II. Rather than countering the construction of a national, “Chinese” identity, native-place ties were often the cement with which the anti-imperialist movement was built.

Only since 2000 have historians of China drawn attention to population movements to China's northeast borderland, a disputed region in China's centuries-long expansion. In the late Qing dynasty and during the Republic (1880s–1949), Manchuria became the prize fought over by the Russians and Japanese, and Japanese investment and development turned Manchuria into one of the great industrial heartlands, with major urban centers connected by an extensive railway network. These projects required large numbers of workers, and the first two decades of the Republic were marked by the greatest influx of migrants. 42 Gottschang and Lary's Swallows and Settlers: The Great Migration from North China to Manchuria (2000) 43 examines twenty-five million people who moved from Hebei and especially Shandong to the northeast (Manchuria) between the 1890s and the 1930s, one of the great historical population movements.

Characterized as one of the first “modern” mass internal migrations in China, this movement was a precursor to the use of contract laborers in newly established industrial enterprises owned by the Japanese colonial settlers. Supplemented by compelling personal stories collected during interviews with elderly returnees in Shandong, the historical study documents how the Chinese migrants, overwhelmingly male, strategically negotiated over both push (natural disasters and political disorder) and pull (higher wages available in the Japanese- and Russian-owned modern industrial enterprises) factors to manage migratory plans. Many of these migrants, known as “swallows,” moved back and forth annually, although others, known as “settlers,” stayed in Manchuria more permanently. Families played a key role in the migration process as they decided which members would migrate and when. Migrants also relied on information and assistance from kin and fellow villagers in arranging their trips and finding work, and sent remittances back to their families. Gottschang and Lary's point is not, however, that swallows and settlers were separate groups, but that those who began as or intended to be “swallows” ultimately became (reluctant) settlers.

Over the past ten years, a new field in modern Chinese history has emerged and developed that has shifted focus to China's West, in which inner migrations to Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, and Tibet have become the subject of research into histories of the borderlands, ethnicity and interrelations between non-Han ethnicities, empire and state governance, capitalism, and nationalism since the late nineteenth century. This historiographical shift has been seen as the result of the “Develop the West” program that the People's Republic of China (PRC) put in place in 1999. It has emerged from within the context of PRC state control of unrest in Tibet and Xinjiang: spectacular infrastructural projects such as the railroad to Lhasa, huge southwestern dams, oil and gas pipelines linking Xinjiang to East China, and enormous mining concentrations such as the rare earth complex at Bayan Obo and the coal boom in Inner Mongolia. 44

While studies of migration in the Japanese empire have examined the expansion of the metropole's power into its colonies, historical research on inner migration to China's western peripheries in the first half of the twentieth century has focused on how the Han Chinese territorial goal of dominance continued to change from that of building a historical empire to that of creating a modern polity, and from regionalism to nationalism. Joe Lawson's Xikang: Han Chinese in Sichuan's Western Frontier, 1905–1949, 45 Hsiao-Ting Lin's Tibet and Nationalist China's Frontier, 46 and Justin M. Jacobs's Xinjiang and the Modern Chinese State 47 examine the Han Chinese borderland policies and administrative structures that connected the mainland migrants to the respective regions and shaped their engagement with the ethnically diverse highlanders. Joe Lawson explores the Han's engagement with minor ethnicities in the Tibetan Kham region and the mostly Yi- and Han-settled Liangshan in Xikang province in the first half of the twentieth century. While the Xikang regional administration always relied on outside subsidies, from the mid-1930s the export of opium helped late Qing and Republican-era governors build robust Han-dominated local administrations.

Echoing Lawson's thesis, Lin's Tibet and Nationalist China's Frontier also addresses the Nationalist government's ethnopolitics on China's western borderlands of Inner Mongolia and Tibet that still challenge the PRC today. The frontier policy planning structure within the Nationalist governmental bureaucracy after 1928 provided a channel for officials at the Nationalist center and authorities at the provincial border, in which in-migration was an urgent issue involving urban employment opportunities and exclusion. Population transfer to Inner Mongolia was initiated during the Republican period, rendering Mongolians already a minority in their province by the beginning of Communist rule. To build a strong national frontier, foreign affairs and military agencies of the Nationalist government tried to create a new national image embodying the five main nationalities (Han Chinese, Manchu, Mongols, Tibetans, and Hui Muslims), forming a multi-ethnic image of China, when managing China's international relationships with its northwestern neighbors in the 1930s and 1940s.

In Xinjiang and the Modern Chinese State, Justin M. Jacobs focuses on similar mobilization involved in two basic strategies of government from the Qing imperial precedents to the Chinese Communist Party. The “ethno-elitist” strategy co-opts local hereditary nobles, who possess their own legitimacy, while the “ethnopopulist” strategy seeks to establish the state as the authentic representative of the common people. Throughout his book, Jacobs employs the conceptualization of a “national empire,” a claim that from the dynastic imperial court to the Chinese Communist party onward, migration and borderland policies have been employed by the Han central government, and through which modern state-building in terms of state control over migration, the periphery, and minor ethnicities remains the same as it was during the Qing empire.

As a highly structured and kinship-oriented migration, this internal migration in China should be considered as both the means to and the end of forming the brand of capitalism that was established in China by the turn of the twentieth century, which involved colonialism, fascism, and nation-state building. As a means to that end, mass immigration provided a large industrial labor force for primary accumulation of capital, the profit from which was exploited by Chinese capitalists, the Chinese state, and the Japanese and Russian colonial governments and capitalists. As an end, the male-dominated labor migration from the major farming regions to the northeast borderlands signaled the decline of agricultural production and of the system of farming-village governance in the early twentieth century, through which bonded farming labor gradually became alienated labor fueling the growth of heavy industry as capitalism was established in northeast China. As shown in the research, this transition from agriculturalism to industrial capitalism in China revealed how former kinship/family-oriented social relations not only existed, but also functioned actively in the process of labor alienation and capital accumulation. In such a way, the kinship village system – local kinship communities in rural China – eventually dissolved. To highlight the macro-historical significance of this great migration, we note that it was involved with capitalism, colonialism, imperialism, and fascism in the first half of the twentieth century. Therefore, even geographically “internal” migration within Chinese territory demonstrated that the transition to capitalism in China was essentially transnational when the push and pull factors were taken into consideration.

On the other hand, historiography of modern China has established the connection between the modern history of state-building and migration settlement in territory that is peripheral, or frontier-like from the perspective of expanding polities. Historians often cast the late Qing government's efforts to transform its empire's periphery as fundamentally connected to the “age of high imperialism.” As Kenneth Pomeranz argues with respect to Manchuria, “The new political calculus forced upon China by the age of high imperialism made the logic of encouraging expanded settlement and rapid development … irresistible.” 48 This connection between state-building and migration settlement in peripheries or frontiers has been further considered by historians of Republican China in their study of the territorial strategy for military defense and borderland control, which may or may not been seen as a continuity with the “age of high imperialism.”

In contrast to the historical study of migration within Chinese territory, the history of overseas Chinese migration and migrants has been studied either from the nation-based approach or from the transnational approach. While the former highlights the local and national – internal factors that have shaped the formation of migrants’ status, identity, and relationship with indigenous populations – the latter focuses on the external factors – colonialism, global capital, war, and recently global climate change – that played the determinant role in shaping migration patterns and scales. In the past decade or so, historians of Chinese migration have attempted to interpret the subject by balancing the effects of internal and external factors and by applying a comparative approach, bridging the longstanding gap between two groups of scholars, one trained in Chinese history and the other in Asian-American studies. The burgeoning growth in the number of Asian Pacific American historians, and of interest in Asian Pacific American history, has created a broad spectrum of historical approaches. One of the most exciting of these has been the collaboration with East Asian studies. Recently, historians of China in particular have become more interested in the “greater” China that encompasses the Chinese diaspora into Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Hawai‘i and the Americas, and even Europe and Africa.

Yong Chen's Chinese San Francisco, 1850–1943: A Trans-Pacific Community 49 and Madeline Y. Hsu's Dreaming of Gold, Dreaming of Home: Transnationalism and Migration between the United States and South China, 1882–1943 50 investigate the transnational life of the immigrants within the large and significant Chinese American communities from the mid-nineteenth century to the World War II era. Chen emphasizes the role played by San Francisco's Chinatown, which provided not only economic opportunities for Chinese immigrants but also a political space for the immigrants to demonstrate concern for China's national salvation during wartime. The economic importance of the “Gold Mountainers” was widely recognized when fellow Chinese in China helped organize a 1905 protest against America's anti-Chinese policies and provided relief funds to Chinese San Franciscans after the earthquake and fire devastated Chinatown in 1906. Rather than addressing the formation and roles of the migration communities, Madeline Y. Hsu perceives the transnational ties between the Chinese migrants and their families in China during the exclusion era of 1882–1943. Hsu's study focuses on connections between these male-dominated communities and their wives, children, and other relatives in China. Wives held considerable power because they raised children alone and oversaw the dispensation of the family income, which created a unique culture of transnational family and gender relations.

In recent years, transnational studies of Chinese overseas migrants’ lives have moved beyond a particular national case. Rather, a comparative approach has emerged, across the transnational spaces of oceans, to and through Peru, Cuba, the United States, Canada, and Mexico, and sometimes back across the waters to China. Elliott Young's Alien Nation: Chinese Migration in the Americas from the Coolie Era through World War II 51 investigates the stories and experiences of migrants from the Pearl River Delta in China, providing a comparative history of the growth of the immigration bureaucracy in the United States, Mexico, and Canada, and the ways in which the state interacted with the Chinese in North America from 1900 to 1940. In particular, it discusses the 1911 Revolution that preceded the fall of the Qing dynasty, and the transnational organizations in the Americas connected to those events.

Adam McKeown's Chinese Migrant Networks and Cultural Change: Peru, Chicago, Hawaii, 1900–1936 and Andrew Wilson's edited volume The Chinese in the Caribbean take on the transnational approach and treat Chinese migration as a “global field.” 52 Under this rubric, the Chinese diaspora should be studied comparatively beyond the pre-determined national and geo-political boundaries. For McKeown, immigration laws and Chinese migration patterns from the mid-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries can be examined by focusing on Chinese communities in Peru, Chicago, and Hawai‘i, respectively. In forming these various Chinese communities, local networks and identities and their specific concerns, resources, and information flows have acted in constant dialogue with, and often helped to create the big picture of, a transnational economy in the three regions. 53 More interestingly, as in studies of inner Chinese migration, this transnational study stresses how villages and families became transnational entities through Chinese migration in the first half of the twentieth century, 54 revealing a more complicated bottom-up policymaking process that has been ignored in nation-based scholarship.

Regarding Chinese migration under global colonialisms, The Chinese in the Caribbean covers Chinese migrant communities in the Caribbean, mostly in Jamaica, Guyana, Trinidad, Cuba, and Panama, from the late nineteenth century to the twentieth century. 55 Such Caribbean studies have long been heavily associated with multi-racial and multi-ethnic studies of the American empire and Americanism, in which the relationship between local racial or ethnic communities and American imperialists has been prioritized. By contrast, this edited volume stresses local ties and interactions between the Chinese communities and a variety of colonial governments and local Caribbean social stratification systems. Lok Siu's research among the Chinese in Panama suggests that the concept of diaspora should incorporate a set of relations, discourses and sentiments that bind migrants not only to their homelands but also to their co-ethnic communities dispersed across other locations. Migration is fluid and connected, rather than a process that concentrates on “ruptures and disjunctures.” 56

Walton Look Lai's research places Chinese émigrés and labor movements within the contexts of Chinese and Caribbean histories of the formation of the Jamaican indentured labor system in the British West Indies. The dynamic aspects of inter-ethnic relations and power presented a complicated vertical and horizontal matrix of networking, collaboration, and resistance, in which the horizontal alliances of labor movements were highlighted as the major factors in formulating the system. 57 Having explored early Chinese and Indian émigré settlements in British Guiana and Trinidad, Anne Marie Lee-Loys emphasizes the importance of the role of colonial elites in employing imported labor not only to fulfil needs but also to shape the ethnic hierarchy. 58 Aspects of this topic are addressed also by Gail Bouknight-Davis, who chronicles the rise to prominence of the Chinese in Jamaica's grocery sector, focusing on class and occupation. 59

Horizontal alliances and the formation of Caribbean social stratification systems have been further elaborated in highlighting the Chinese migrants’ own experiences. Drawing on Chinese-language materials published in Jamaica, Li Anshan stresses the Chinese experience with migration to present émigrés’ views on aspects of community and participation in local politics. 60 Kathleen López emphasizes the Chinese experiences in Cienfuegos and Havana, in which interconnections based on emigrants’ villages of origin in China are particularly highlighted as a matter of management to compel the Cuban government to “recover” Chinese customs and traditions. 61 Mitzi Espinosa Luis recovers a personal life history of an elderly Chinese “uncle” in the first half of the twentieth century. 62

To further complicate the Chinese migrants’ own experiences in the Caribbean, López, in Chinese Cubans: A Transnational History, examines the multiple factors inside and outside of Cuba that shaped Chinese identities and experiences on the island as well as how developments in Cuba affected local communities back in China, from the time of the initial “coolie trade” dispersion (1847–1874) of Chinese laborers into the mid-twentieth century. 63 In particular, the work pays attention to the intertwined relationships between Chinese in the capital and Chinese in other parts of the island, reminding us of a variety of regional and kinship interests and collaborative, yet sometimes contradictory, relations within the Chinese labor community in Cuba. As a result, López argues that Chinese immigrants in Cuba forged transnational sojourner identities. 64 The majority of the Chinese became Cuban through interracial marriage, adoption of Spanish names, religious conversion to Catholicism, and participation in Cuba's wars of independence and Cuban politics. 65 Yet, these immigrants remained “Chinese” as they formed Chinese neighborhoods, sent remittances back to China and maintained family ties across the Pacific, created associations to preserve their traditions, published Chinese-language newspapers, followed and participated in Chinese modernization campaigns and larger political developments, and as merchants maintained ties to the Chinese diaspora and China through business. 66 It was because of their transnational sojourner identities, López argues, that the Chinese migrants in fact contributed to policy-making and political movements in Cuba. While President Menocal temporarily lifted the ban on Chinese immigration during World War I to increase the country's labor supply, 67 images of patriotic Chinese fighters in the Cuban wars of independence and the virtues of family benefited the Chinese in Cuba, who never experienced the same level of hostility as their compatriots did in other parts of the Americas. 68

The Chinese in the Caribbean and Chinese Cubans: A Transnational History exemplifies works of migration studies under the rubrics of cultural studies and postcolonial studies. Colonialism and colonial relations were established through class and ethnic stratification, in which Chinese immigrants in the Caribbean were subalterns within colonial society. While embracing the subaltern identity, the Chinese immigrants’ participation in local politics, their interconnections with each other and with their villages in China, and the revival of Chinese tradition and immigration memories demonstrated resistance to colonial power. Yet, the subaltern identity was further reinforced through these political and cultural practices insofar as the Chinese immigrants’ social and ethnic status seemingly remained in the Caribbean. Apart from examining links created through local and national ties, the redefinition of diaspora suggests ways in which migrants can form global horizontal alliances that are not restricted by regional or national boundaries.

While the postcolonial and cultural histories of Chinese migration focus on migratory destinations and regions populated with immigrants, since 2010 historians have taken greater interest in migratory connection points and networks. In Connecting Seas and Connected Ocean Rims: Indian, Atlantic, and Pacific Oceans and China Seas Migrations from the 1830s to the 1930s (2011), edited by Donna R. Gabaccia and Dirk Hoerder, articles on Southeast Asian seas emphasize the role of geographical conditions and examine maritime networks in Ryukyu and Hong Kong as well as the growth and importance of Singapore as a migration node for the Chinese. 69 For example, as an intermediary point in the movement of six to seven million immigrants between 1868 and 1939, Hong Kong developed a variety of institutions associated with migration, providing services and raising funds for overseas Chinese; it also became a central location for exchanging currencies and for exporting goods to overseas Chinese. 70

Unlike works that study migratory way stations under global capitalism, Micah S. Muscolino's The Ecology of War in China: Henan Province, the Yellow River, and Beyond, 1938–1950 takes the social-metabolism approach and treats the Yellow River Delta as a state-manipulated region for refugee migration. 71 Throughout World War II, Chinese and Japanese military leaders sought to manipulate natural resources and deploy their power against their adversaries in the Yellow River that for centuries had already become a human-engineered technology as a “natural” environmental feature. 72 About 43 percent of the pre-war population temporarily lived as refugees and migrated to the northeast and southeast between 1937 and 1945 after Chiang Kai-shek breached the dikes in Henan, Anhui, and Jiangsu. The Yellow River Delta became one of the war's most important front lines and the connecting point for the refugees. According to Muscolino, this migration caused by war strategy devastated the environment by interrupting the energy cycle, also damaging the relationship between civilians and the Nationalist Party. 73 However, Muscolino stresses that, unlike conventional scholarship that treated the environment as passive and submissive to human manipulation, the environment was capable of recovering from human-induced tragedies via the redirection of energy, which made possible the return of the former Hunan refugees and migrants. 74

Connecting Seas and Connected Ocean Rims and The Ecology of War in China represent newly emerging scholarship that has shifted focus to historical formations of migratory connection regions due to global capital flows or state monopoly over the environment. This new historiography not only emphasizes the important roles of social factors that cannot be conflated by nation-state and colonial power relations, but also highlights historical significances of natural (environmental and geographical) and non-human factors in establishing conditions for migration.


Our examination of recent English-language studies on migrations in and out of modern East Asia shows the wide range of concerns and methodological approaches that characterize this scholarship. Although this body of work exhibits an irreducible diversity, we find some trends or prominent themes that are worth mentioning.

First, along with the transnational turn in a broader scholarly discussion, recent migration studies pay keen attention to the border-crossing experience, particularly with respect to national and regional borders, and the role of remaining ties to and interactions with the home country, in which social and non-governmental ties, connections, and spontaneous activities have also become subjects of study. This trend prevents scholars of migrations from focusing on a single disciplinary field or national history. As we noted regarding the history of migrations across the Pacific, the role of transregional networks has become a common topic in recent studies of migrations out of East Asia. Meanwhile, researchers with their eyes on mobility also direct scholarly attention to population movements within an empire or a country. Such studies address various power relationships such as those between metropole and colony, the central state and the periphery, and between different ethnic groups.

Regarding analysis of the migrant experience, migrants’ subject formation in new environments and contexts draws considerable scholarly attention. In that process, gender, racial/ethnic difference, class, nationality, and civilizational hierarchy have played crucial roles. This enriches our understanding of historical encounters between subjects of unequal social positions and reveals multiple conflicts and hegemonic struggles.

Finally, these works also yield insights into the methodology of recent studies of East Asian migrations. On the one hand, cultural and postcolonial studies influence the analysis of identity formations and the role of culture in migrant life. On the other hand, to analyze migration in the context of modern social transformations such as the expansion of capitalism and the development of empires, some studies pay attention to the mechanism and role of political economy.

Other than these conspicuous characteristics, recent works also suggest interesting potential subject matter for the development of migration studies along with environmental studies and studies of institutional/state control of human mobility. Particularly, the examination of the environment enhances the development of migration studies in East Asia by introducing non-human factors, meanwhile advancing the field of environmental history itself by including specific environmental factors and the interactions between human activities and natural world in East Asia.

Some of these characteristics also resonate with newly emerging theoretical approaches to migration studies and show some promise for further articulating the implications of historical migrations in East Asia. For example, Mezzadra and Neilson's recent theoretical work on migration and the multiplication of labor emphasizes the proliferation of borders in the contemporary global world and the importance of the mechanism of geographical borders as well as temporal and cognitive borders. 75 Their analytical perspective is combined with discussion of the transition of capitalism in the late twentieth century. Nevertheless, as we saw in the case of the precarious mode of minority laborers in the Japanese empire, a careful analysis of the various borders would be crucial for studies of the historical experience of migration in East Asia as well. Meanwhile, the analysis of subject formation of transnational/regional migrants would be enriched by addressing the global expansion of liberal humanism. In this regard, Lisa Lowe has recently examined colonial relationships that connected continents in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and has explicated how the various “others,” including Chinese and African migrant/slave labor, formed the constitutional outside of a liberal political sphere of free individual subjects. In this process, the coeval presence of “others” and oppressive systems was forgotten and displaced into the exteriority of the normative sphere of liberal humanism. 76 Such an inquiry could be extended to cover the case of twentieth-century migrations in and out of East Asia as well, and allow us to examine the migrants’ entanglements and conflicts with normative subject formations in a broader historical context.

Although this article has necessarily left many relevant books and journal articles untouched, it has addressed the diverse perspectives manifested in recent migration studies that indicate heterogeneous aspects of modern East Asian societies and their complicated relationships with dominant national and international regimes. Thus these studies not only offer a historical landscape that has shaped the dramatically changing modern world of East Asia, but also provide us with valuable insights into the contemporary globalized world, in which both the fluidization of society and complex formations of the system of control have developed.

1 Hoerder 2002; Manning 2005.

2 Ibid .

3 Ibid . and Lucassen and Lucassen 2009.

4 Ibid .

5 Shiode 2015, pp. 16–19 and Yoshihara 2013, p. 431. In regard to this statistical data, the word “Japanese” indicates people with Japanese family registries, which include the Okinawan and Ainu people.

6 Merkel-Hess and Wasserstrom 2009.

7 Hobsbawm 1994; Sluga 2013.

8 Young 2014, pp. 1118–19.

9 See, for example, Weiner 2004; Iacobelli et al. 2016; Kratoska 2005.

10 For a classic work on Japanese migration to Manchuria, see Young 1998.

11 Uchida 2011.

12 Ibid ., p. 18.

13 A comparable approach to Japanese settler colonialism is offered by O'Dwyer's study of the settler community in the city of Dairen. O'Dwyer 2015.

14 Ibid ., p. 97.

15 Ibid ., p. 131.

16 Ibid ., p. 25.

17 Ibid ., pp. 22–25.

18 Brooks 2005. For literary studies of migrating female authors, see Horiguchi 2011.

19 Ibid., p. 300.

20 The English translation of her book is Yamazaki 1999.

21 Brooks 2005, pp. 300–304.

22 Masterson 2004 is one of the pioneering historiographies of the Japanese migration to Latin America. This book traces and compares the formation of Japanese immigrant communities in countries such as Peru and Brazil. Hirabayashi et al. 2002 and Adachi 2006 explore and integrate the various experiences of Japanese overseas populations under the umbrella of the Nikkei category or diasporic identity as they cover Latin American cases as well. In the meantime, Nakasone 2002 adopts the idea of diaspora in approaching the history of Okinawan migrations.

23 Azuma 2005.

24 As Takezawa and Okihiro 2016 show, the study of transpacific Japanese migration is becoming a major scholarly concern. In regard to the relationship between Japanese imperialism and Latin American emigration, see Endoh 2009. Meanwhile, Kim 2011 sheds additional light on such transpacific studies by examining the historical relationship between Korean migrations to the US and the Japanese empire.

25 Ibid ., pp. 10–11.

26 Azuma 2008, pp. 1187–1226.

27 Emily Anderson's recent book (Anderson 2014) also offers a transpacific analysis of Japanese Christian missionaries’ activities in Japanese colonies and across the Pacific. Geiger 2011 and Smith 2005 trace the historical function of the Japanese caste system and midwifery, respectively, in transpacific Japanese migrations. Kenneth J. Ruoff's book on tourism (Ruoff 2010) and a large number of works on issues related to comfort women also provide studies of human mobility related to the Japanese empire.

28 There have been many studies on these topics in Japanese and English publications. In English, for example, see Weiner 1994 and Rabson 2012.

29 Han 2014.

30 Ibid ., p. 18.

31 Ibid ., p. 146.

32 Kawashima 2009; Park 2005.

33 Kawashima 2009, p. 22.

34 Park 2005, p. xi.

35 Ibid ., pp. 44–45.

36 Ibid ., p. 161.

37 Mark Driscoll's work (Driscoll 2010) also develops a theoretical perspective that overlaps with the work of Park and Kawashima. In addition to analyzing marginalized migrating subjects, such as Chinese coolies and sexual workers, in the Japanese empire, the work sheds light on the role of unique subjects such as human and drug traffickers.

38 Watt 2009, p. 18.

39 Ibid ., p. 79.

40 Morris-Suzuki 2009.

41 For studies on internal migration to Shanghai, see Wakeman and Yeh 1992; Honig 1986 and 1992; Goodman 1995; and Perry 1993. For studies on internal migration to Tianjin, see Hershatter 1986.

42 Reardon-Anderson 2005.

43 Gottschang and Lary 2000.

44 Pomeranz 2015.

45 Lawson 2011.

46 Lin 2007.

47 Jacobs 2016.

48 Pomeranz 2001, p. 337.

49 Chen 2000.

50 Hsu 2000.

51 Young 2014.

52 McKeown 2001, p. 19.

53 Ibid ., pp. 61–99.

54 Ibid ., pp. 100–134.

55 Wilson 2004.

56 Siu 2004.

57 Lai 2004.

58 Lee-Loy 2004.

59 Bouknight-Davis 2004.

60 Li 2004.

61 López 2004.

62 Luis 2004.

63 López 2013.

64 Ibid ., pp. 115–62.

65 Ibid , pp. 82–114.

66 Ibid ., pp. 163–236.

67 Ibid ., pp. 141–43.

68 Ibid ., pp. 117–43.

69 Gabaccia and Hoerder 2011.

70 Sinn 2011.

71 Muscolino 2015.

72 Ibid ., pp. 21–58.

73 Ibid ., pp. 142–71.

74 Muscolino 2015.

75 Mezzadra and Neilson 2013.

76 Lowe 2015.


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