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Keeping Informed as Teachers: What We Need to Know About Xinjiang Today

This was a virtual program – instructions on how to join this meeting will be sent the day before the event.

You have read the headlines: “The Chinese government has reportedly detained more than a million Muslims in reeducation camps.” Teachers joined us as we discussed the stories beyond the headlines and grapple with Xinjiang’s complex history. Who are the Uyghurs? When did mass detentions of Uyghurs and other Muslims begin? What does Beijing say about these incarcerations? What is happening inside and outside the camps? We discussed day-to-day life in rural and urban areas of Xinjiang today.

Professor Darren Byler, a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Asian Studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder, discussed these and other issues facing Uyghurs as they struggle to maintain their religion and cultural identity. Following Professor Byler’s Xinjiang overview, Tese Wintz Neighbor, who has been taking American groups to Xinjiang annually for more than a decade, moderated a discussion with questions, including what American travelers and teachers can do in learning about Uyghur culture and teaching its ancient history.

This program was co-sponsored by UW’s East Asia Resource Center and the World Affairs Council’s Global Classroom. Teachers received three clock hours and extensive Xinjiang Teaching Resources. Registration was open to all K-12 teachers.


June 11, 2020, 3:00 – 6:00 PM, PST.

This online program was held on Zoom.


  • Online resources
  • 3 Washington State OSPI clock hours