Master of Arts in History
Sue Fawn Chung, Committee Chair
First Committee Member
Second Committee Member
Graduate Faculty Representative
Number of Pages
This thesis is a global comparative study tracing the functions and historical development of Chinese huiguan ["official organization"] and its leadership in China, Indochina, and San Francisco. Early Chinese immigration to America and Indochina involved the formation of huiguan, organizations based on dialect and native place, paralleling the functions and demography of merchant associations originating in China. The merchant elite representing its leadership were preeminent arbitrators of Chinese tradition and authority. French Indochina and America recognized their status as community leaders, further exalting the social standing of merchants and increasing their positions of authority. These organizations greatly influenced the lives of a majority of Chinese immigrants in an attempt to replicate, with varying degrees of fidelity, the social, religious, and networking environments of native-place regions. By providing material aid, financial connections, and charitable functions, huiguan existed within a framework of carefully-defined relationships essential to the very survival of Chinese communities.
Chinese huiguan; Chinese immigrants; Chinese societies; Merchants; Social classes; Social organizations; Social status
Cultural History | History | Social History
Christman, Lanelle Elizabeth, "Chinese transnationalism and the creation of a liberal public sphere" (2009). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 144.