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The Lama QuestionViolence, Sovereignty, and Exception in Early Socialist Mongolia$
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Christopher Kaplonski

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780824838560

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824838560.001.0001

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Surveillance and Control

Surveillance and Control

The Religious Administration and the Government Representatives

(p.143) Chapter 7 Surveillance and Control
The Lama Question

Christopher Kaplonski

University of Hawai'i Press

The socialist state created a complex administrative apparatus as part of its shifting attempts to deal with the lama question. This chapter illuminates the means by which the government monitored, influenced, and attempted to control the monasteries by documenting the administration and the government representatives located in the monasteries. This chapter serves both an ethnographic and a theoretical purpose. At an ethnographic level, reports by the government representatives provide on-the-spot views of life and attitudes in the monasteries, although obviously filtered through certain perspectives. At a more theoretical level, these reports allow us to see the ways in which policies and directives were translated locally and the ways in which the state sought to reinforce its claim to sovereignty in the face of monastic opposition.

Keywords:   political violence, state of exception, Mongolia, political anthropology, Buddhism, socialism, surveillance

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