Open Collections

UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

The political system of the Vancouver Chinese Community : associations and leadership in the early 1960’s Straaton, Karin Vivian 1974

Your browser doesn't seem to have a PDF viewer, please download the PDF to view this item.

Item Metadata


831-UBC_1974_A8 S87.pdf [ 7.27MB ]
JSON: 831-1.0099990.json
JSON-LD: 831-1.0099990-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 831-1.0099990-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: 831-1.0099990-rdf.json
Turtle: 831-1.0099990-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 831-1.0099990-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: 831-1.0099990-source.json
Full Text

Full Text

THE POLITICAL SYSTEM OF THE VANCOUVER CHINESE COMMUNITY: ASSOCIATIONS AND LEADERSHIP IN THE EARLY 1960's  by ' KARIN VIVIAN STRAATON B.A., University of Chicago, 1971  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS  in the Department of Anthropology and Sociology  We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA May, 1974  In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s  thesis  an advanced degree at the L i b r a r y I  in p a r t i a l  the U n i v e r s i t y  s h a l l make i t  freely  f u l f i l m e n t o f the of B r i t i s h  available  for  requirements f o r  Columbia, I agree  that  reference and study.  f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e copying o f t h i s  thesis  f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be granted by the Head o f my Department or by h i s of  this  representatives.  It  thesis for financial  i s understood that copying o r p u b l i c a t i o n gain s h a l l  not be allowed without my  written permission.  Department o f  Anthropology and Sociology  The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia Vancouver 8, Canada  D  a  t  e  May 13, 1974  i  ABSTRACT This thesis is concerned with an investigation of the nature of voluntary associations and leadership in the Chinese community of Vancouver during the 1960's. The perspective adopted i s one of viewing the  Vancouver Chinese community within the general context of overseas  Chinese social organization, that i s , of examining the significance of voluntary associations and the system of leadership arising from these associations in terms of how they structured community relations internally and created tties with the wider society of which the community was part.  An account of the effects of Canadian immigration policy on  the nature of Chinese migration to British Columbia i s given in order to  provide a historical  background to this investigation.  The methodology employed i s inter-disciplinary in nature and combines anthropological, historical, and sociological techniques. consists of analyses  It  of (1) previously collected interviews with pro-  minent leaders and other members of the community; (2) historical materials  pertaining to the British Columbia Chinese, including transla-  tions of Chinese newspapers and association periodicals; and (3) published materials pertaining to the Chinese in Southeast Asia and i n other  centers  in North America.  It was recent  years  found that the Vancouver Chinese community, both in  and i n earlier stages of i t s development, exhibited a pro-  liferation of voluntary associations that created a network by virtue of interlocking directorships and memberships.  This network of associa-  tions formed an indigenous p o l i t i c a l system that allowed the Chinese a  ii  s i g n i f i c a n t degree of intra-community control.  The important role that  voluntary associations assumed i n the Vancouver Chinese community i s shown to be common tary associations  to many overseas Chinese communities i n which volunwere also s i g n i f i c a n t i n the d e f i n i t i o n of leadership  and i n the part they played as de facto governments when other impinging external control was absent.  iii  TABLE OF CONTENTS Page Preface  1  Chapter I:  The Study of Overseas Chinese  2  Chapter II: The Effects of Canadian Immigration Policy on the  Chinese "in British Columbia  Immigration Policy and the Vancouver Chinese Background to the Chinese Community in Vancouver: The Gold Rush and the Railway, 1858-1885 The Beginnings of the Vancouver Chinese Community:  1886-1903  22 22  26 29  Reaction Against the Chinese, 1904-1922  31  The Period of Exclusion, 1923-1946  37  Growth and Development - The Sponsorship System, 1947-1967  41  Impact of the Point System, 1967 to Present  47  Chapter III: Voluntary Associations and Their Emergence in Vancouver's Chinese Community Chinese Voluntary Associations in Vancouver  53  in the 1960's  57  The Fraternal Associations  65  The  The  The Chinese Freemasons  65  History of the Chinese Freemasons in B.C.  67  The Kuomintang Association  71  The Chinese Lions, Elks, and Veterans  74  Clan Associations  77  iv  Page The Locality Associations Community Associations: Association  86 The Chinese Benevolent  91  Other Associations: Athletic, Commercial, Charitable, Leisure, and Alumni  95  The Network of Associations in the Early 1960's  98  Chapter IV:  Leaders and Leadership in the Chinese Community of Vancouver  106  The Historical Emergence of Chinese Leadership in Vancouver  106  Nature of the Data on Leaders of the 1960's  109  The Social Characteristics of Forty-Nine Chinatown Leaders Age and Sex  113  Place of Birth  114  Family Situation  117  Education and Occupation  120  Political Alignment  124  Extent of Assimilation  125  Conclusions Chapter V:  112  The Leadership Elite  130 134  The Four Most Influential Leaders  136  Other Influential Leaders  145  The Social Characteristics of the Leadership Elite Chapter VI: The Wider Perspective  147 152  V  Page  Bibliography Appendix I :  162 C o n s t i t u t i o n and By-Laws of the Chinese Freemasons of Canada, A r t i c l e I I , O b j e c t s and By-Law I , Membership  168  vi  LIST OF TABLES Page Chapter II: Table  IIA:  Table IIB: Table  IIC:  Head Tax and Chinese Immigration into British Columbia  30  Proportion of Males to Females in Canada by Age, 1925  32  Population of Chinese in Vancouver by Decade, 1911-1971  48  Chinese Associations in Vancouver in the Early 1960's The Freemasons and Subsidiary Bodies in  59  the Early Sixties  72  Table IIIC:  Clan Associations of the 1960's  79  Table HID:  Locality Associations of the 1960's  88  Table HIE:  Relative Influence of the Associations  102  Table IVA:  Age of Forty-Nine Chinatown Leaders  113  Table IVB:  Place of Birth of China-born Leaders  116  Table IVC:  Place of Origin of Leaders"Families  118  Table IVD:  Place of Birth and Ethnicity of Wife  119  Table IVE:  Leaders' Educational Achievement  121  Table IVF:  Occupations of Leaders  122  Table IVG:  Proportion of Business Contacts Chinese  122  Table IVH:  Proportion of Business Contacts Chinese vs. Occupation  123  Chapter III: Table IIIA: Table IIIB:  Chapter IV:  vii  Page  Table IVI:  Proportion Friends Chinese  125  Table IVJ:  Number of Associations Belonged To  127  Table IVK:  Place of Birth and Clan Association Membership  129  Chapter V: Table VA:  The Acquisiton of Influence  149  viii  LIST OF FIGURES Page Figure I: The Network of Associations:  Early 1960's  100  ix  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS  I wish to thank the members of my thesis committee, G.E. Johnson, E. Wickberg, and W.E. Willmott, for their advice, criticism, and support in writing this thesis and for making available to me the materials of their research projects, without which this work could never have been written. I owe special thanks to Dr. Willmott for giving me access to the fieldnotes he had collected on the Vancouver Chinese community during the sixties, for suggesting the feasibility of this thesis topic in the f i r s t place, and for serving as my thesis adviser until his resignation from the University of British Columbia in 1973. In addition, I am also indebted to the other members of the project who offered me their assistance:  William Yee for giving me i n -  formation on the present status of associations in Chinatown, Jennie and Bessie Yu for their translations of Chinese materials, and Ma Sen for his help with Chinese calligraphy. Fellow graduate students Carole Farber and Ellen Judd kindly read drafts of the thesis and provided encouragement during the whole endeavour.  1  PREFACE  The topic of this dissertation is voluntary associations and leadership in the Chinese community of Vancouver.  This problem was o r i -  ginally suggested to me, as a graduate student interested in Chinese anthropology, by members of a team at the University of British Columbia who were engaged in a project dealing with the history of the Chinese 1 in Canada and recent Chinese migration to Canada.  They felt that  there was a need for a synthesis of published and unpublished materials concerning the Vancouver Chinese in order to provide a background for further research. Of particular relevance to the concerns of this project was the nature of the community in the early and mid-1960's, that i s , before the impact of the migration due to liberalized immigration legislation became apparent.  It was felt that the nature of community  organization at that point in time had to be understood before the extent and nature of change in the seventies could be established.  In this  thesis, I have attempted to make use of these materials in order to provide an ethnographic description of the Vancouver Chinese community in the sixties from the combined perspectives of history, sociology, and anthropology.  2  CHAPTER I THE STUDY OF OVERSEAS CHINESE  Most treatments of North American Chinese communities to date have been concerned with the problems of assimilation, the impact of the host society on the ethnic group, and the reactions of the host society to the presence of the ethnic group (e.g., Lee 1960, Baureiss 1971, Cheng 1931).  These are a l l crucial variables in the formation of  any immigrant ethnic community, and I have treated them when possible. They do not, however, comprise my major focus. I am not so much interested in what the overseas Chinese in North America have to say about America (as the melting pot or the vertical mosaic or whatever), as in what they have to say about the nature of overseas Chinese communities in general. I think this approach is justified (but certainly not the only justifiable approach) because of the fact that Chinese communities the world over are remarkably similar. Nor am I primarily interested in what the overseas Chinese can t e l l us about traditional Chinese culture in their homeland, an area of inquiry that has become more and more popular since opportunities for social scientists to do fieldwork in China itself have become reduced. Although this type of analysis has produced some interesting results (e.g., Crissman 1967, Willmott 1970a), I believe that overseas Chinese society has developed a culture of i t s own, one that is quite different from both traditional rural Chinese culture where many of the immigrants originated and that of the vastly changed China of today.  By offering a  3  glimpse into the social organization of the Vancouver Chinese, I hope to provide material that can be used for comparative purposes in defining exactly what this culture of the overseas Chinese is a l l about and to what extent i t varies from community to community.  In the last chapter,  then, I draw some cursory comparisons with other Chinese communities. These comparisons are, however, for the most part limited to Southeast Asian examples because of the lack of data on the social organization of North American Chinese communities in such centers as Montreal, Toronto, San Francisco, and New York. My primary interest, then, is anthropological, that i s , in the social organization of the Vancouver Chinese.  Given this interest,  one may well ask, why the emphasis on associations and leadership?  There  are two reasons why I have chosen to view the community from this perspective, one pragmatic and the other theoretical.  The pragmatic aspect  is that the definition of my "problematic" was limited by the kind.and extent of data available.  Since I did not do my own fieldwork for this  study, I often found myself in the position of having to choose between adopting the perspectives of the people who had collected the data and trying to use the data in ways that i t was not originally intended to be used.  My solution to this problem is to a great extent a compromise  between these alternatives.  Where possible, I have attempted to f i t the  data into my own theoretical perspective, and where not possible I have merely borrowed the frameworks and approaches of others in the interest of presenting as much of the data on the subject as possible.  The em-  phasis on associations and leadership, then, arises in part from the  4  fact that I was given access to unpublished materials on the Vancouver Chinese that had been collected by people with specific interests in these areas. These data are quite diverse in nature and were collected by several different individuals. They include: and administered  i) interviews designed  to Chinese leaders in Vancouver by Erickson for her  thesis entitled "Prestige Power and the Chinese", M.A. thesis, U.B.C, 1966;  i i ) files on associations and leaders in Vancouver Chinatown in  which relevant information from the Chinatown News was recorded for the purpose of carrying out an analysis similar to, although not as extensive as, Skinner's (1958) work on the Bangkok Chinese; i i i ) translations and summaries of the Chinese Times from 1914..on, done by Chinese research assistants; and finally, iv) Willmott's fieldnotes on the Chinese in British Columbia, which were collected throughout the sixties and which include extensive interviews with knowledgeable members of the Vancouver community and with representatives of several major associations. In addition, I have made use of published and unpublished materials on the Chinese in British Columbia (e.g., Sedgwick 1973, Lyman et a l . 1964, Willmott 1964 and 1970b, Wai 1970, C.Y. Lai 1972, and Wynne 1964). Pragmatic considerations aside, there are certain reasons why I think an inquiry into the social organization of the Vancouver Chinese can justifiably be approached from the perspective of associations and leadership.  It can be argued that the network of associations that the  Vancouver Chinese community exhibits together with the system of leadership that arises from this network form an indigenous p o l i t i c a l struc-  5  ture.  It is important not only to describe this structure, but to under-  stand to what extent the social organization of this particular group of overseas Chinese is articulated in terms of political considerations and how this compares with Chinese communities elsewhere. not an original approach.  This is certainly  Ethnographic studies of overseas Chinese in  Southeast Asis have pointed to the significance of associations in the political and social organizations of these communities  (e.g., Skinner  1958, Freedraan 1967, T'ien 1953, and Willmott 1970a), and the few theoretical works done on this subject have substantiated and clarified in more general terms the specific findings of the ethnographers (e.g., Crissman 1967, Fallers 1967, and Johnson, Forthcoming). The studies done on overseas Chinese in North America, however, have for the most part not been concerned with a social-organizational approach, or indeed, with investigating the common characteristics of the diaspora of overseas Chinese communities. reasons why this has been the case.  There are several, quite valid,  First, a concern with social organ-  ization has traditinally been an anthropological concern, and anthropologists have been slow to apply their methodology to complex, urban sectors of the West. But this is changing.  Schneider's (1968) work on  American kinship is one example of a successful application of anthropological concepts and tools to a complex aspect of modern Western society. In terms of overseas Chinese, Weiss' work (1971) on the Sacramento community is a step in this direction, as are those by Lyman (1968) and Willmott (1970a).  6  Second, the extent to which social scientists have been uninterested in using anthropological concepts to approach Western society is in large part a measure of the limitations that are s t i l l endemic to the discipline:  a tendency to formulate general theoretical perspec-  tives solely on the basis of data collected from tribal, peasant, or village peoples, an over-reliance on one methodology, that of participantobservation, and a reluctance to utilize the methodological tools and approaches of other disciplines.  Freedman, in his "Chinese Phase in  Social Anthropology", has remarked that developments in anthropological studies of China created a step forward from traditional social anthropology (1963: 12).  In a sense, because overseas Chinese are found in urban  contexts a l l over the world, they pose the same kind of challenge to social anthropology as did village China several decades ago. As Schneider stated, anthropologists can no longer be considered merely "the  sociologist of 'backward' or 'underdeveloped' societies" (1968: i v ) .  The case of the overseas Chinese offers yet another opportunity to demonstrate the validity of this statement. One particular aspect of social anthropological theory that I have found of some use in dealing with the problems of overseas Chinese social organization is p o l i t i c a l anthropology. Although generally concerned with the universal problems of the maintenance and establishment of social order, p o l i t i c a l anthropology i t s e l f has had difficulty in escaping from the functionalist paradigm and from a bias toward smallscale societies (e.g., Fortes and Evans-Pritchard 1940, Middleton and Tait 1958).  The author of one of the most recent treatments of political  7  anthropology in fact^concludes that politics, contrary to kinship or }  myth, has defied systematic treatment and remains imprecise in nature. As the author states, "The political can be reduced neither to a code (such as language or myth) nor to a network (such as kinship or exchange). It remains a total system that has not yet been given a satisfactory formal treatment" (Balandier 1970:  49).  Political science, on the other hand, exhibits quite different failures than those of p o l i t i c a l anthropology.  Political science has  failed to integrate the examples of undifferentiated societies into i t s theoretical approach just as p o l i t i c a l anthropology has failed to integrate the example of i t s own society into i t s framework. While p o l i t i c a l anthropology leans heavily on the exotic, political science is marked by its ethnocentricity and i t s emphasis on formal government and administration.  Clearly some synthesis is needed, especially when i t comes to the  overseas Chinese.  Specifically, the concepts of informal power relations,  systems of adjudication, customary law, and the kin, ritual and  symbolic  bases of power need to be integrated with the concepts of formal hierarchies, governments, and elections. More important, an approach is needed that can deal with the relationships and interaction between these different levels of the p o l i t i c a l . Swartz, Tuden, and Turner (1966) have pointed out that heterogeneous societies should not be modeled on organic or mechanical analogues but rather on "social fields" that have many dimensions and parts independent of each other (1966: 8). "field".  The p o l i t i c a l , to them, is one such social  Due to the difficulties of defining the boundaries of the  8  Vancouver Chinese community, let alone that of i t s p o l i t i c a l system, the advantages of this approach over that of the functionalist framework are apparent.  The Vancouver Chinese do not represent an isolated society  with well integrated parts;  they are a changing ethnic group in a com-  plex society whose political system must serve, not only to create social order internally, but also to link the group with the wider society around i t . Swartz et a l . (1966) have also stressed the necessity for progressing from static and synchronic analyses to dynamic and diachronic 2 ones.  In the same vein, Leach has also remarked that real social sys-  tems are never in equilibrium, i t is only the models of them that are (1954: 4).  In spite of the fact that the main purpose of this thesis is  a description of the Chinese community in the sixties, then, i t is felt that a synchronic approach would indeed produce a static analysis.  The  role of associations in Vancouver's Chinese community cannot be understood without reference to their historical origins and the part they played in the community throughout i t s history.  Therefore, a great pro-  portion of the data I present is historical in nature.  This is in accord  with my conception of anthropology as a field that combines the use of historical, sociological, and anthropological materials in i t s overall approach (as Freedman 1963 has urged), and, further, one that does not posit prior assumptions of equilibrium. In my approach to the Vancouver Chinese, then, the manner in which I use the concept "political system" is in many ways similar to that found in political anthropology.  It is a system that is articulated  and legitimated by the people themselves, one that is distinct from the  9  colonial or state apparatus that may be superimposed on i t , and one that is understandable only i n terms of the total social organization of the group under consideration.  Further, i t is an analytic, not a concrete  distinction, i n Parson's terms (1968: 34). In the sense I use i t , however, the concept of "political system" i s applied to an ethnic group and not to a well-defined, territorially based tribe - an extension which from the perspective of p o l i t i c a l anthropology makes i t s definition and use a l l the more d i f f i c u l t .  Perhaps a closer look at a few  general points about the nature of the overseas Chinese ethnic community w i l l reduce some of these difficulties.  In spite of the fact that overseas Chinese communities are found i n urban contexts a l l over the world, i t i s possible, as Crissman states, "to discern a similar segmentary organization underlying the superficially different characteristics of various communities" (1967: 185).  This segmentary organization is created by divisions within the  community based on differences i n surname, native place, and dialect. These criteria are used to create segments that are not discrete but interlock and overlap due to cross-cutting membership, thus creating speech, locality, and surname "sub-communities" related within the 3 framework of the larger community. Exactly which criteria a community w i l l use as organizational principles varies. As Crissman states, The actual points of segmentation...used vary greatly from one city to another, and even i n the same place over time, and depend on the immigration history, the relative numbers from various localities with different names, and the existence of special interests held by potential communities (1967: 191).  10  Thus, in Vancouver, segmentation on the basis of dialect is not operative, while segmentation on the basis of surname and native place i s . The characteristic of segmentation on the basis of a finite number of principles, then, is what creates the similarity among overseas Chinese communities, while i t is the selection and manipulation of these principles that creates the diversity. The political system of these communities is also segmentary in nature.  In each community, each segment, or sub-community", is 11  represented by an association; for instance, the group of people from the 4 Tai-Shan [Toy-Shan] xian  in Kwangtung province are united by the Toy-  Shan locality association, while a l l the people united by the same surname Lee are represented by the Lee Clan Association.  Taken together,  the proliferation of voluntary associations that most overseas Chinese communities exhibit serves to govern the community in a situation where self-government is largely practiced but where outright p o l i t i c a l autonomy is denied or rejected. These associations generally assume three functions:  i) the  internal management of the community, i i ) the representation and integration of the community into the host society, and i i i ) the linkage of the community to other overseas Chinese communities and to the homeland to promote pan-Chinese interests. The voluntary associations are actually "the administrative organs of the communities [e.g., segments] from which their drawn" (Crissman 1967: 194), and in this sense they are a skeleton of the social structure at large.  11  The associations are able to function as effective p o l i t i c a l mechanisms by virtue of the fact that they are joined together into a network. . In addition to the natural hierarchies that are formed by the greater or lesser inclusivity of the segments which the 'associations represent, the formation-of this network is accomplished by means of interlocking directorships and by factional alignment based on wider p o l i t i c a l issues.  From the point of view of individual power, interlocking direc-  torships in associations and executive boards are significant in that the more times a leader shares executive positions with other leaders, the wider his communication network and the more effective his means of control.  From the point of view of the total associational network, inter-  locking directorships are important in that they create power blocs within the system i t s e l f .  Skinner (1958) has carried out a detailed  analysis of interlocking directorships among the Chinese in Bangkok, and his work remains a model in the study of overseas Chinese society. The political nature of the associations among overseas Chinese  i s , however, usually covert due to the fact that the Chinese have  often had to govern themselves without visible p o l i t i c a l institutions because these were considered subversive or threatening to the government of the host society (see for instance D. Willmott 1960, Freedman 1967,  and W. Willmott 1969).  Thus, i t is usually the case that the poli-  tical system of the overseas Chinese consists of an ordered network of seemingly apolitical associations and of the system of leadership that arises from this network.  The existence of associational networks in  Chinese communities that have acted as de facto governments at one time  12  or another has been documented for Bangkok by Skinner (1958) , Singapore by Freedman (1967), Phnom-Penh by W. Willmott (1970a),  Semarang by  D. Willmott (1960) in Southeast Asia, and for Sacramento, California by Weiss (1971), Victoria by Sedgwick (1972) , and Vancouver by Lyman (1962) and W. Willmott (1970b) in North America.  Future research on overseas  Chinese communities by historians, anthropologists, and sociologists w i l l undoubtedly provide more examples of this phenomenon. Further, i t is largely this network of associations that has allowed the Chinese to remain in relative isolation from the culturally alien milieu that surrounds them, as attested to both by the continued existence of "Chinatowns" throughout North America and by the presence of distinct Chinese settlements throughout most of Southeast Asia.  The autonomy that  is afforded to these Chinese communities by the nature of the p o l i t i c a l structure i s , however, as much a result of a resistance to assimilation on the part of the immigrants as i t is of a real lack of opportunity to assimilate created by the host society. ing of  As Baureiss has noted, the grant-  permission to enter coupled with an unwillingness to give the  immigrant access to crucial values and institutions of the host community "seals the alien off in a segregated unitoof his own" (1973: 17). Given the p o l i t i c a l nature of the associations, their functions vary with the varying relationship of the minority community to the dominant society.  Specifically, the extent of control over the community  by the host society, the presence or absence of alternative means of polit i c a l expression, and the nature of the integration into the wider society all/affect both the type of activities that the associations perform and  13  the size and complexity of the.associational network. With regard to complexity of the associational network, for instance, Willmott has suggested that the paucity of associations in the Chinese community of Phnom-Penh throughout the colonial period was due to the impinging nature of French rule (1969: 282-3), and with regard to the specific nature of the network, Freedman has attributed the dominance of the secret society and the exclusion of other types of associations in Singapore's early history to the measure of control being exerted by the British (1967: 46). As he states, "...we may conclude that select societies were likely to appear only when the Chinese were faced with a challenge to. control their own affairs" (1967: 46). The components of the associational network range from secret societies to music groups and usually include organizations based on the place of origin in China, clan a f f i l i a t i o n , sports interests, dialect, Chinese and local politics, charity, and community-wide representation. These last groups, such as the Chinese Benevolent Association in Vancouver or the Federation of Philippine Chinese Chambers of Commerce, usually form the apex of a hierarchical structuring of associations and include representatives from lower-level associations.  Furthermore, church  groups, Chinese language schools, and Chinese newspaper and hospital boards, although not formal associations, are often integrated into the associational network.  In the early 1960's, there were over eighty for-  mal Chinese associations in Vancouver. In the context of overseas Chinese society, these voluntary associations assume many of the functions exercised by the lineage system  14  in traditional China.  Both the lineage system and associations,for in-  stance, f u l f i l l such needs as protection of economic and supernatural interests, arbitration, and solidarity (Johnson, Forthcoming).  Because  voluntary associations have been so crucial in narrowing the gap between pre-industrial and industrial society, one author has termed them "bridging mechanisms" (Johnson, Forthcoming), and another has noted that they have been instrumental in the management of external relations in a situation where satisfying moral ties with the host community are lacking (Fallers 1967: 12). Voluntary associations themselves were by no means lacking in traditional China, although they were predominantly confined to urban settings.  For instance, Kato (1936) documents the existence of a fore-  runner to the merchant's association in urban centers of China as early as the T'ang and Sung periods.  Similarly, Niida (1950) l i s t s kinship,  common geographical origin, graduation from the same school, common trade, common religion, and common occupation as bases for associational activity in Peking in the early 1940's.  Even within the framework of the highly  developed lineage system of rural Southeastern China, there was room for the development of certain types of voluntary associations.  As Freedman  states, Obviously, conditions in the localized lineage of southeastern China were not such that associations were likely to assume there so important a structural position, but we must be wary of thinking that, because the lineage community appeared stable and bound by rules of kinship and status behaviour, associations could not emerge on any considerable scale (1958: 92).  15  Freedman goes on to note that such voluntary associations as secret societies, mutual-aid clubs, burial associations, and music clubs were operative in village settings in Southeastern China.  The utilization of vol-  untary associations overseas, then, was not an innovation in i t s e l f . What constituted an innovation was the increasing number of needs that these institutions were called on to f u l f i l l - especially in situations where the associations effectively formed de facto governments. Transplanted into the context of immigrant communities, the associations are usually highly multi-functional in nature.  As Lyman  states, one association is often simultaneously regarded as "an employment office, court of arbitration, revenue agency, public lobby, recrational hostel, mutual aid society, and burial association" (1962: part III, 1).  The role of associations as courts of arbitration is particularly  important.  Because membership in the associations is cross cutting and  thus provides channels for arbitration, disputes can be settled internally.  Thus, conflict on one level promotes social cohesion on another  and again serves to reinforce the isolation of the community from the host 5 society.  The factional alignment of associations, and the leaders  who  mediate between these factions, are therefore of great significance to the structure of the community. Another generalization that can be made about voluntary associations among the overseas Chinese is that some seem to be oriented toward more traditional Chinese values than others. nese associations of Phnom-Penh, Willmott  In describing the Chi-  (1970) chose the term "tradi-  tionist" to apply to some of the associations, while he labelled others  16  "modernist".  He preferred the term "traditlonist" to "traditional" be-  cause i t was their orientation, rather than their existence, that was traditional (1970a: 15). Modernist associations were differentiated from traditionist ones in that their activities were "oriented toward more universalistic values" (1970a: 116).  The traditionist associations,  on the other hand, were based on the more particularistic criteria of surname, native place, and language group. The associations among the Vancouver Chinese of the 1960's were also polarized with respect to the traditionist/modernist dichotomy. Many associations in Vancouver during this period could be termed traditionist, that i s , they were in one way or another concerned with the continuation and preservation of the Chinese heritage.  Ultimately, these  associations served to channel interest back to the homeland rather than to the host society, and their members were often more committed to p o l i tics in China than to the local political situation. When this was the case, they exhibited commitment to the political party of China that attempted to rely on Chinese heritage as an answer to contemporary problems; namely, the Kuomintang.  These associations were only peripherally,  i f at a l l , concerned with promoting assimilation into the host society. During this period, however, both due to changes in the a t t i tudes of the host society toward them and to changes in their attitudes toward China, some Vancouver Chinese began to express more proassimilationist or pro-integrationist sentiments.  These changes in a t t i -  tude were accompanied by the development of modernist associations that were concerned with establishing a Canadian identity as well as with the  17  selective preservation of some aspects of the Chinese culture.  These  associations oriented themselves toward more universalistic values and concerned themselves more with the place of the Chinese in the host society than with the relation of overseas Chinese to China.  These associations  were, however, more interested in integration than in total assimilation, and they played an important role in preserving the identity of the Chinese community.  The competition for power between these two  types of associations in the Vancouver Chinese community w i l l be taken up in Chapter III. The differirig-g modes of p o l i t i c a l orientation among overseas Chinese has been documented in a general sense by Wang Gungwu (1970) . Drawing insight from the political activities of the Malaysian Chinese, he distinguishes three types of p o l i t i c a l groupings among Southeast Asian Chinese.  As he states,  ...the Chinese throughout South-East Asia have at a l l times manifested three distinctive political groupings based on their commitments to politics in China, to the politics of the respective overseas communities, and to local politics whether indigenous, colonial, or nationalist (1970: 4). The f i r s t group maintains links with the politics of China and is f i r s t and foremost concerned with the destiny of China; the second group is concerned with the indirect politics of trade and with establishing a community identity, while the third group, in Malaysia, is tentatively committed to some sort of Malaysian loyalty. These categories are not directly transferrable to North American Chinese, but some parallels can nevertheless be drawn. In Vancouver, the individuals who continued to be involved with homeland politics those who belonged to Wang's f i r s t category - were usually traditionist  18  in orientation and involved with those associations that attempted to perpetuate traditional Chinese culture.  The individuals who were com-  mitted to overseas Chinese politics - Wang's second category - were more modernist in orientation and tended to participate in those associations that attempted to promote Chinese community interests, whether social, cultural, or commercial.  Finally, those Chinese who were solely com-  mitted to Canadian politics - whether municipal, provincial or federal - were usually not involved in the associational network at a l l and are only peripheral to the concerns of this paper. In spite of the increasing integration of the Chinese into Canadian political processes, however, the associational network of the sixties continued to play an important role as a "boundary marker" that was instrumental in the definition of the Chinese community (see Barth 1969: 15-16).  Thus, the network became instrumental in maintaining dis-  crete categories of ethnicity despite changing membership and participation in the community i t s e l f .  This is not to say that the associational  network became less important, but that the nature of i t s importance changed from former times. That associations are s t i l l integral to the definition of the Chinese community in Vancouver is attested to by the fact that some sixty to eighty new associations have been formed in the last ten years and that the associations seem to have a new appeal to 6 youth and new immigrants. Some Operational Definitions Political:  " P o l i t i c a l " is used here in a broad sense to denote  those areas of social l i f e concerned with ensuring internal cooperation,  19  regulating or resolving conflict, and directing public affairs (Balandier 1972: 49).  Viewed in this sense, the associational structure of the Van-  couver Chinese community assumes political significance throughout the history of the community. Community:  Community is used here in the sense that Crissman,  after Maclver, has defined i t , as "an area of common l i f e based on common interests which can determine activity" and which "has ethnicity as well as locality as i t s basis" (Crissman 1967:' 188).  Thus, the ethnic  community is seen as having social, rather than s t r i c t l y t e r r i t o r i a l , boundaries, although in the case of the Vancouver Chinese community the social community has always had a t e r r i t o r i a l nucleus in the form of Chinatown.  As Barth states in his discussion of ethnic groups, "the  boundaries to which we must give our attention are of course social boundaries, though they may have t e r r i t o r i a l counterparts" (1969: 15). The formation of these social boundaries entails the existence of common socio-psychological referents and of common sets of interrelated institutions (Baureiss 1971: 12); however, as Crissman has noted, whether the community is a corporate group, a group, or a quasi-group is a matter for empirical verification (1967: 188). Leader:  Leader is defined for the purposes of this study to  include those Chinese individuals holding one or more executive positions in Chinese associations in Vancouverrand who were mentioned at least twice in the Chinatown News from 1961 to 1965 (see Chapter IV). This definition is considered adequate because i t hasubeen previously established that for the period under consideration Chinese leadership not based on associational backing was almost non-existent (Erickson* 1966).  20  Integration and Assimilation:  Assimilation is seen as the  process that ends the ethnic community by changing culture patterns to those of the host society, while integration is seen as the process by which immigrants find a place in the host society without necessarily losing their ethnic identity (see Gordon 1964).  These concepts, because  they involve two different processes, must be carefully distinguished. Network:  The network of associations is created by interlocking  directorships and memberships which "are the main channels of communication and influence uniting the various organizations" (Skinner 1958:  200).  In the absence of formal hierarchies and lines of control, the p o l i t i c a l efficacy of the associations derives from the more covert relationships among them created by the interlocking of executive positions. With these concepts minimally defined and the theoretical background of the study sketched out, i t is possible to proceed to the discussion of the Chinese community in Vancouver.  The next chapter,  Chapter II, attempts to document how immigration legislation has affected the structure of the community in Vancouver.  Chapter III deals with the  associations of the Vancouver community, examining their historical emergence as well as their significance in the 1960's.  Chapters IV and  V are concerned with the leaders of the associational network of the 1960's and with the social characteristics of the men who assume these leadership positions.  tended to  Finally, Chapter VI deals with the  Vancouver Chinese community from the point of view of what i t has to say about the wider social organization of overseasa Chinese.  21  FOOTNOTES - PREFACE AND CHAPTER I  1.  The directors of this team, W.E. Willmott, E. Wickberg, and G.E. Johnson, are at present working under the auspices of two projects, one funded by Canada Council entitled the Organizational Adaptation of the Vancouver Chinese and the other funded by the Secretary of State (Citizenship Branch), which is concerned with producing a comprehensive history of the Chinese in Canada. They kindly gave me access to materials from both projects.  2.  For a summary of relevant p o l i t i c a l anthropological theory prior to Swartz et al. (1966) see the introduction to Willmott's Political Structure of the Chinese in Cambodia (1970).  3.  "Sub-community" is Crissman's term, and i t seems to confuse the issue rather than clarify i t . I would prefer the term "sub-group" or "community segment".  4. Xian can be roughly translated as county or district. The system of romanization adopted in this paper is generally that of the pin-yin system currently used in China today. I make exceptions to this system when a Cantonese style of translation is in common use, such as in the names of Chinese associations in Vancouver, or when another romanization of Mandarin is conventionally accepted, such as in the name of the province Kwangtung. Place names in Kwangtung are given in pin-yin, followed by the Cantonese in brackets. 5.  This is essentially Gluckman's theory as presented in his Custom and Conflict in Africa (1955). I am indebted to Willmott for pointing out i t s applicability to the overseas Chinese.  6. This information is based on research currently being carried out by William Yee, a member of the project investigating recent Chinese migration to Vancouver.  22  CHAPTER II THE EFFECTS OF CANADIAN IMMIGRATION POLICY ON THE CHINESE COMMUNITY IN BRITISH COLUMBIA  In spite of the fact that this thesis deals primarily with leadership and voluntary associations in the Vancouver Chinese community as i t existed in the 1960's, some knowledge of the history of the Chinese in British Columbia is needed to provide a background to this topic. Therefore, this chapter presents a short historical account of Chinese migration to British Columbia.  Special emphasis is placed on the effect  that discriminatory immigration legislation had on the structure of Chinese communities in the province, and particularly on the structure of the Vancouver Chinatown district of the early 1960's. Immigration Policy and the Vancouver Chinese The Chinese have formed a distinct and organized ethnic community in Vancouver at least since a group of Chinese males f i r s t banded together there after the Canadian Pacific Railroad was completed in 1 1886.  From its inception, the community was plagued by restrictive  immigration policies and anti-Oriental legislation that inhibited its growth and structured the nature of relations within i t .  In this short  historical account, I attempt to document how these policies - only one manifestation of the widespread racism that promoted them - affected the social organization of the community and invited conflict. One author has recently noted that in Canada "immigration is neither a national myth nor is i t widely accepted as an essential element  23  in national development" and that French-English relations have often pre-empted the place of immigration in national mythology (Hawkins 1972: 34).  Perhaps this is one of the reasons why Canadian immigration policy  has been characterized by uncertainty and inconsistency.  Whatever the  cause, the lack of a consistent perspective in immigration policy has certainly created an undue amount of hardship within Chinese communities throughout Canada.  From the time B.C. joined Confederation in 1871 un-  t i l the almost total prohibition of Oriental immigration in 1923, antiOriental legislation was a major issue that kept B.C. and Ottawa in a state of constant disagreement.  In addition, labour, professional groups,  employers, immigrants' associations, railway and steamship companies, and such organizations^ as the Canadian Chamber of Commerce a l l tried to make their voices heard, and, more often than not, the decisions made by the  federal government were the result of pressure by the most powerful  groups.  Needless to say, these were not the immigrants' associations.  Thus, the Chinese, in particular, often became the victims of domestic political struggle. Canadian immigration policy has progressed from an almost purely racist orientation to one based more on manpower considerations.  In 1966,  with the creation of the Department of Manpower and Immigration, immigration was for the f i r s t time to be systematically related to occupational demand. Between the time of the repeal of the Exclusion Act in 1947 and the  formation of a new immigration approach in 1966, however, the "solution"  to the problem of immigration was seen to l i e in the sponsorship system. At f i r s t i t was thought that this system was indeed a successful solution,  24  but as the years progressed some of the problems Inherent in this approach began to appear, namely:  (1) a major bias in favour of previously es-  tablished groups, (2) the potential for sudden and unexpected growth, (3) hardship for immigrants in terms of long-term adjustment, and (4) the tendency toward the creation of segregated and self-contained ethnic communities (Hawkins 1972: 49). The Canada Manpower and Immigration Council Act of 1967 changed the nature and extent of Chinese migration to Canada. At this time, a great number of unsponsored, relatively highly trained Chinese from Hong Kong migrated to Canada, creating some important changes in the Vancouver Chinese community.  Until this time, however, the Chinese tendency of  "chain migration" was reinforced by the sponsorship system.  In the  1960's, therefore, the vast majority of Chinese immigrants in Vancouver, as in Canada at large, came from a small region in the southern province of Kwangtung in the Pearl River delta that includes the following counties:  Zhong-Shan [Chung-San], Pan-Yu [Pun-Yu], Shun-de [Sun-Dak], Tai-  Shan [Toy-San or Hoy-San], Kai-Ping [Hoy-Ping], En-Ping [Yan-Ping,]., and Xin-Hui [San-Wui],  Very few immigrants originated from other places i n  China, hardly any from northern China. Because the immigrants from this region a l l speak various dialects of Cantonese, the Vancouver Chinese community, unlike those in most of Southeast Asia, is not segmented on the basis of language, but mainly on the basis of differences of surname and county of origin.  Other Chinese communities in the Western hemisphere  also seem to be fairly homogeneous with respect to language.  25  The history of the Chinese in Vancouver can be divided into five stages based on major policy changes in immigration.  These are:  (1) 1858-1885: Background to the Chinese Community in Vancouver, the Gold Rush and Railroad; (2) 1886-1903: Beginnings of the Community; (3) 1904-1922: Reaction against the Chinese; (4) 1923-1947: The Period of Exclusion; (5) 1947-1967: Growth and Conflict, the Sponsorship System; and (6) 1967 to Present:  Expansion and Diversification, Impact  of the Point System. This periodization, based on immigration legislation, differs only slightly from those of Willmott (1970b) and Foon Sein (in Willmott 1970b). Willmott's periodization, however, was formulated with regard to a sociological approach to the development of Chinese community organization in B.C., while Foon Sein's is based on his personal historical perspective.  The fact that a l l three categorizations are similar lends sup-  port to the contention that immigration legislation is significant to the understanding of the Chinese in Canada from whatever perspective one is interested in: historical, sociological, or p o l i t i c a l . Finally, the history of the Chinese in British Columbia can be viewed in another way, that of a progression from an i n i t i a l period in which the Chinese and white population occupied distinct economic niches and were in minimal competition for resources, to one in which they were in competition for resources and racism and discrimination prevailed, and lately, to one in which they are in more reciprocal positions and in which certain important goods and services are interchanged (see Barth 1969: 19-20).  26  I.  1858-1885: Background to the Chinese Community in Vancouver, the Gold Rush and the Railway Up until 1885, when the f i r s t indications of an expanding  Chinatown in Vancouver began to appear, British Columbia was open to unlimited Chinese immigration. Due to the impact of the Cariboo Gold Rush, the  town of Barkerville quickly grew to immense proportions, the popula-  tion being estimated from five to twelve thousandoin,theel860's • (Willmott 1970b: 43).  Of these, the Chinese probably accounted for three to five  thousand, most of whom had followed the miners up from California to f u l f i l l such service occupations as cooking, laundering, and peddling vegetables.  Some of them provided mine labour, while others became known for  "digging the gold waste".  The Chinese who made his fortune in gold,  however, was the exception, even among those few Chinese who became i n dependent miners themselves (Willmott 1970b: 44). During this time, wealthy Chinese merchants in California had established the credit-ticket system whereby a would-be immigrant's passage was forwarded to him in advance. Although superficially this system appears innocuous, i t was in actuality based on a debt/bondage system and not on service/contract obligations.  Campbell (1923: 28) points to the role of the Six Companies,  a Chinese association in San Francisco, in securing repayment of the debt - for which they often charged as much as 4 to 8% monthly interest.  The  leadership of this association was composed of a wealthy Chinese merchant elite who were among the f i r s t Chinese to migrate to North America. In the early 1880's, five to six thousand coolies were shipped directly from China to Canada under engagement to the contractors of the  27  Canadian Pacific Railway, and by 1884 more than 15,000 Chinese had entered B.C., most of them to work on the railroad (Campbell 1923: 37). By this time, in spite of the fact that the majority of Chinese were s t i l l in the fairly remote areas of the province, a sizeable Chinese district had developed in Victoria.  It was also during this time in  Victoria that three very important associations that were later to play a significant role in the Vancouver Chinese community were established, namely:  the Ning Yung Hing Tong locality association [ Ning-yang Xing-  Tang] , the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association [Zhong-hua Hui-Guan], and a local chapter of the Chee Gung Tong [Zhi-gong Tang], later called the  Chinese Freemasons.  The activities and structure of these  asso-  ciations w i l l be discussed in the next chapter. Sedgwick (1973) reports that up until 1866 the Victoria newspapers allude to the Chinese in favourable terms.  After this, evidence  of anti-Oriental prejudices and discrimination begins to appear in the literature, but there is no real evidence that the Chinese were in competition with white labour until at least the mid-1880's (Wynne 1964). When the WWorking Man's Protective Association circulated a petition in 1878 urging the government to pass anti-Chinese legislation, the f i r s t instance of anti-Chinese labour agitation, the Chinese were s t i l l primarily in marginal economic positions that no one else would f i l l .  For instance,  Wynne states that with respect to the canneries, "White men were the foreman, mechanics, and fishermen; the Indians did some fishing and cleaning; while the Chinese made the cans, f i l l e d them and soldered them up. There seemed no desire by white labour to replace the Chinese" (1964:  28  368-369). With respect to the coal mines, he maintains on the basis of an analysis of original sources that:  "The inference simply is that  Chinese competition even with coal miners was not felt to be intolerable at that time  " (1964: 369).  Nevertheless, labour was not the only anti-Chinese pressure group in the province.  Anti-Chinese factions in the provincial govern-  ment attempted time and again to instigate anti-Chinese legislation, only to have i t revoked by the higher courts. In fact, at one point during the construction of the C.P.R., the Prime Minister became so irked at the constant complaints about Chinese labour in the province of B.C. that he remarked:  "At present i t is simply a question of alternatives:  either you must have this labour or you cannot have the railway...." (from Wynne 1964: 348). At the beginning of this period, around the late 1850's, the Chinese f i r s t followed the miners up to the gold fields in British Columbia.  They soon established their own economic niche in this new setting  by opening laundries and restaurants, establishing gardens to supplement the miners' unbalanced diets, freighting, supplies into the area, and setting up mercantile concerns to provide the growing Chinese community with goods (see Stanton and Prang 1970: 5).  They were both innovative  and creative in their adaptation to the new environment but nevertheless self-contained in their attitudes.  As Stanton and Prang state:  Probably a l l white miners saw the Chinese as an enigma. While other minorities ... assimilated, the Chinese lived in a world of their own. They either grew their own food or bought i t from Chinese merchants. If they lived in the mining districts, their supplies were freighted in by Chinese  29  teamsters. Their transportation from China to British Columbia and return was in the hands of more Chinese capitalists. They didn't even stay in the country when they died, but ...had their bones sent back to China in boxes for burial in their native land (1970: 22). Thus, the period directly preceding the establishment of a Chinese community in Vancouver was unique in the history of the Chinese in Canada in several ways. It was the only time that totally unrestricted Chinese immigration was ever allowed; i t was the only time that the Chinese occupied a really distinct niche in the Canadian economy, and i t was the only time that the sojourner mentality of continued orientation toward China was universally prevalent among the migrants. II.  The Beginnings of the Vancouver Chinese Community:  1886 to 1903  The beginnings of Vancouver's Chinatown along Pender Street are relatively undocumented, but i t i s known that many Chinese were faced with unemployment after completing the C.P.R. to Vancouver in 1886 (Willmott 1970: 46-47).  The founding of the community also coincides  with the passage of the f i r s t anti-Chinese law in Canada, a law that not only imposed a $50 head tax on incoming Chinese but also stipulated that:  (1) a b i l l of health was required from every incoming Chinese;  (2) Chinese already established in Canada must secure a certificate to remain and would be fined $400 for not doing so; and (3) i t was i l l e g a l for the Chinese to organize their own courts (Cheng 1931: 60).  In  spite of these harsh measures, the period 1886 to 1903 i s characterized by continued growth of the community until immigration was temporarily halted by passage of the $500 head tax in 1904, as Table HA  illustrates:  30  TABLE IIA Head Tax and Chinese Immigration into British Columbia Number of People Paying Tax  Year  Amount  1900  $ 50  4,231  1901  100  2,518  1902  100  3,525  1903  100  5,245  1904  500  4,719  1905  500  8  1906  500  22  1907  500  91  1908  500  1,482  1909  500  1,411  1910  500  1,614  Source:  Canada Year Book 1910, p. 410. By 1902, there were 2,011 Chinese in Vancouver, only about 900  less than in Victoria, the majority in both communities being male. Gambling houses and prostitution were common, and 1885 to 1899 was a peak period for the opium business.  Many of the Chinese, being unemployed and  finding that their former jobs were no longer available to them, began to look for other work which was formerly only done by whites.  But compe-  tition was s t i l l minimal and confined to marginal areas, as indicated by Campbell's statement that "...the occupations which usually afforded work for boys, girls, and women" were "being mainly held by the Chinese and Japanese" (1971: 53).  Physical confrontation between whites and  Chinese did take place during this period, but i t was usually confined to  31  fights between individuals.  No mass action by whites against Chinese  was undertaken until the anti-Oriental riots in Vancouver in 1907. Willmott notes that some occupational specialization according to place of origin was evident during this period.  For instance, the  Zhong-Shan [Chung-San] people tended to peddle vegetables; the Tai-Shan [Toy-Shan] people tended to be in the laundry business, and the Kai-Ping [Hoy-Ping] people in the restaurant business (Willmott 1964: 34). Furthermore, the logging industry seems to have attracted mainly migrants from the San-Yi [Sam-Yap] area, while the cannery business seems to have 2 attracted migrants from the Si-Yi [Sei-Yap] area. The period 1886 to 1903 in Vancouver is also characterized by the establishment and conseuqent elaboration of a myriad of associations that were formed to serve the needs of the Chinese in an increasingly hostile environment.  Although immigration legislation became more and  more restrictive during this period, however, the $50 head tax being raised to $100 in 1901, the community had not yet been h i t by the f u l l impact of discriminatory legislation.  Worse measures were to come.  And in spite of mounting discrimination and prejudice, the fact that the Chinese were not yet in f u l l competition with whites allowed them a certain measure of escape from confrontation.  With the passage of the $500  head tax in 1904, reaction against the Chinese began in earnest, and the various welfare associations attempted to mitigate the effects of the crisis as best they could. III.  1904 to 1922:  Reaction Against the Chinese  The institution of the $500 head tax in 1904 was significant in several respects.  Its immediate effect was to curb immigration drastically,  32  and in 1905 only eight Chinese were listed as having entered and payed the tax.  The ultimate effects of the Act, however, were quite anti-  thetical to what the anti-Orientalists had intended in that i t made Chinese labour more scarce, doubling and tripling wages andthus enabling the Chinese to earn enough to loan the necessary $500 to relatives and.friends (Wynne 1964).  In this way,  the business of the labour agen-  cies was drastically reduced, and in 1908, much to the dismay of the antiChinese, 1,411  Chinese paid the tax and entered  B.C.  By 1910, Vancouver had replaced Victoria as a center for the Chinese and functioned as "residential, economic and cultural locus" (Johnson et a l . 1972:  10).  Census figures for 1911 indicate that the Chinese population of Vancouver was larger than that of Victoria by about 100 people.  By  1921, Victoria's Chinese population had remained almost constant while Vancouver's had practically doubled to over 6,000.'. At this time the population was s t i l l composed mostly of single men, dren being left home in China.  the women and c h i l -  In 1921, there was about one female  for every ten males (Willmott 1964: 34).  In 1925, the proportion of  males to females by age is given in Table IIB. TABLE IIB Proportion of Males to Females in Canada by Age, Age Under 20 21-45 Over 45 A l l Ages  1925  Male  Female  Proportion Males to Females  2,200 41,800 3,000 47,000  1,800 1,000 200 3,000  1.2/1 41.8/1 15 II 15.7/1  33  Source:  Adapted from Cheng Tien-Fang, Oriental Immigration in Canada, The Commercial Press Limited, Shanghai, 1931. Meanwhile, anti-Oriental feeling was becoming more and more  intense.  In 1907, B.C. adopted a policy of segregation in i t s schools  that in theory was based on language inadequacy but in actuality prevented almost a l l Chinese children from attending public school. Chinese Benevolent Assocation protested vigorously  a n  The  d retaliated by  forming i t s own school for Chinese children until the law was repealed a few years later.  1907 also marks the date that the Asiatic Exclusion  LeagTuewas formed in Vancouver.  Wynne remarks in this regard that the  impetus to found the organization had come from south of the border, and that "the anti-Oriental movement which had crept, sometimes not so slowly, from California northward had reached B.C." (1964: 406).  He  also mentions that the League hoped to draw support from both business and labour (1964: 406). In September, 1907, an anti-0ri>ental riot broke out in Vancouver in which an angry mob pillaged both Chinese and Japanese sections of town. Wynne, who has very carefully documented the progression of the riot, asserts that i t was a "sudden outbreak of mass hysteria bent on destruction" rather than a carefully organized attempt to run the Orientals out of town (1964: 414).  The difference in reaction toward  the riot on the part of the Japanese and Chinese, however, is of interest.  The Japanese actively resisted the rioters and mobilized their  own patrols to protect their interests.  The day after the riots, they  continued to work, and most of them armed themselves against future  34  attack.  The Chinese, on the other hand, "retired to their warrens in  Chinatown and announced that until the present unrest was completed, they would not s t i r out" (quoted in Sugimoto 1972: 106).  They counseled  physical moderation and sought to avoid violent confrontation wherever possible.  They day after the riots, instead of returning to work, the  Chinese called a community-wide strike to protest the damages inflicted on their community.  The strike quite effectively upset Vancouver's eco-  nomy for some time. These differences in reaction were also accompanied by differences in the manner in which the Chinese and Japanese were treated after the attack.  Because of British alliance with Japan, a more con-  certed effort was made toward remunerating the Japanese community than was made toward the Chinese community, and, with international diplomacy in mind, the Japanese consulate graciously declined an offer of a $1,600 remuneration soon after the riots (Sugimoto 1972: 108).  The  Chinese were also offered reimbursement, but the issue was not even considered until the middle of the next year. From a sociological point of view, the significance of the strike that the Chinese staged immediately after the riot was twofold: (1) i t indicated that Chinese labour was no longer insignificant in the economy, and (2) i t indicated that the community itself was so well organized that in times of crisis i t could act as ansolidary unit. Wynne states in this regard that:  35  White union bosses must indeed have envied the power of the yellow opposite numbers....Not only was the domestic happiness of the upper crust disturbed; Chinese employed in restaurants and hotels were also called off their jobs; tugs and boats arriving in port found that their Chinese crew members failed to return; and the Chinese cooks and helpers in nearby logging camps left instantly and went to Chinatown. For those who were slow to give up their work there were fines of up to $100; even their lives were threatened (1964: 427). This statement is indeed indicative of the existence of very powerful leadership. Ultimately, the effect of the riot was such that the Federal government could no longer feign indifference with regard to the question of Oriental immigration.  Not only had the riot cost them dearly  in the payment of indemnities, but i t forced them to try to clear the name of Canada with respect to other nations (Cheng 1931: 7, Wynne 1964: 446).  Sugimoto states in addition that "The Vancouver riots put the  British in an embarrassing position, both as allies of Japan and because they had vehemently denounced American behavior in the San Francisco riots only four months previously" (1972: 103). On the national and international levels, then, the riot prompted a greater clarification of the issues involved in Oriental immigration.  On the local level, however, i t merely provoked heightened  feelings of anti-Orientalism that were later to culminate in the total exclusion of Chinese immigration.  One response of the Chinese community  to the increasingly racist attitudes surrounding them was to greatly increase the number of associations devoted to welfare and protest. It was at this time, for instance, that relief and charity associations, such as the Vancouver Chinese Salvation and Welfare Committee and the Vancouver Chinese Christian Association, f i r s t made their appearances.  36  It was also during this period that Sun Yat-sen made visits to Vancouver and Victoria to raise support for his cause.  Given the tumul-  tuous events that China was undergoing at this time, the Chinese communities overseas became increasingly preoccupied and concerned with the state of their homeland. Many associations also played a part in raising funds for the revolution and in attempting to provide relief to relatives and friends in China (Willmott 19 70: 48, Sedgwick 19 73). By the end of this period, Canada was immersed i n a post-war depression, and Chinese and whites alike scrambled for whatever work was available.  Before Chinese immigration was finally terminated in 1923,  however, British Columbia had passed two more discriminatory measures. The f i r s t consisted of an amendment to a previously established act and resulted in a situation whereby "Any Chinese who was suspected of being illegally in Canada could be arrested by the immigration officers without warrant, tried summarily by a magistrate, and deported i f the magistrate so decided" (Cheng 1931: 82). Furthermore, the burden of proof rested with the Chinese. to the Chinese.  The other legislation was even more offensive  It consisted of a prohibition on any white woman or  g i r l working in an establishment owned or managed by Chinese (Cheng 1931: 89). The C.B.A. hired a lawyer to fight the case at the price of $1,000, but four years later the Act was merely changed to stipulate that "no white or Indian women or girls could work in such places where in the opinion of a police chief or inspector i t was dangerous to their morals to do so" (Cheng 1931: 89).  37  IV.  1923-1946: The Period of Exclusion The 1923 Immigration Act was so drastic that only eight Chi-  nese were able to enter Canada as immigrants between then and  1947.  The b i l l was a masterpiece of discriminatory legislation, and i t alarmed the Chinese community in more ways than one. that:  For instance, i t stated  (1) the previously exempt classes of clergymen, teachers, tour-  ists, men of science, and wives and children of merchants and clergymen were to be abolished; (2) a l l Chinese currently residing in Canada had to register within one year of the Act, subject to a $500 fine or one year's imprisonment or both; (3) a l l prohibited classes in general immigration were to be made applicable to the Chinese, including that of illiteracy; and (4) immigration and peace officers were authorized to arrest Chinese under suspicion without warrant (Cheng 1931: 90, 99). Before i t was amended by the federal government, the Act was even more objectionable and could have resulted in the deportation of over half of the community in Vancouver.  Even as i t stood after amendment, such  aspects as arrest without warrant, deportation without appeal, and the severance of family ties, created considerable hardship within the community.  The C.B.A. declared July 1st as Humiliation Day, and other  associations followed suit, but to no avail. The effect of this drastic measure on the community was viously great.  ob-  It preserved the predominantly male composition of the  community just when the Chinese were beginning to have the wherewithal to reunite their families.  Older men without family often joined a fang-kou  - collectively owned hostels supervised by the locality associations.  38  During the depression, Chinese who were not Canadian citizens could not apply for welfare for fear of being deported as indigents (Corbett 1957: 7). The Chinese had no vote - a circumstance that made the role of informal Chinese community leaders very important - and were not a l lowed to be employed on public works.  These discriminatory measures  forced the Chinese to rely on internal solidarity, and specifically, on the indigenous p o l i t i c a l and welfare systems that they had developed within their community.  The Act froze the development of the community  and forced consolidation of the associationalnetwork types of associations: locality.  around four major  (1) fraternal, (2) community, (3) clan, and (4)  The Act created a false and very inappropriate stability in  that i t stunted the development of the community just at a point when, given the right conditions, i t could have flourished. During this period, the Chinese in Vancouver were serviced by four Chinese newspapers, which promoted internal communication and kept them informed about events in China.  Orientation remained to a great  extent toward China, as attested to by the fact that over one million dollars were raised when the Japanese invaded mainland China.  Those  born in China were s t i l l the majority of the Chinese in Vancouver, and Wai (1970) estimates that only 12% of the population was Canadian-born in 1931.  The distinction between China-born and local-born was not yet  an important factor in community organization. Associational activity at this time was quite pronounced. For instance, Cheng (1931) notes the existence of about twenty clan associations around the beginning of this period, one of which offered a reward  39  of $6,000 for the murderer of one of its members (Chinese Times 1924). In 1925, the Wong clan association founded the Mon Keong School. the time of i t s establishment,  At  the school had a policy of " a l l leaves  f a l l back to the roots", meaning that the Chinese children were expected sooner or later to return to China, and their grouding in Chinese should therefore be firm.  Later, this orientation gave way to one in  which Chinese was considered a second language.  Around 1940, the Chinese  Freemasons established a Chinese language school - the Tai Kung Charity School - and the Hon Hsing Athletic Club. Almost a l l the associations of this period functioned to channel interest back toward the homeland. The constitution of an association for a l l migrants from the Tai-shan [Toy-San] district of China, for instance, indicated at the time i t was drafted in 1931 that "the vested interest of the Toy San people, at least the association was firmly implanted in their homeland" (Sedgwick 1973: 179).  Similarly, some of  the objectives stated in the constitution of the Hon Hsing Athletic Club were:  (1) to promote a spartan s p i r i t ; (2) to respond to the suffering 3  of China, and (3) to enhance and glorify the Chinese tradition. It is interesting to speculate on the question of why the Chinese were not assimilated during the 1923 to 1947 period, for, in some cases, severing the flow of immigration has resulted in increased assimilation for the members of an ethnic community.  In Vancouver, however,  this process did not occur, probably because of the nature of the legal and social constraints that the Chinese faced.  For instance, Corbett  40  notes that the depression intensified economic objections to the Chinese, documenting the legislative constraints that they faced during this period.  As he states:  At that time, Orientals, even though they were British subjects, were ineligible to vote in provincial and municipal elections, or to hold office in the provincial legislature or municipal councils or school boards. The provincial voters' lists were used as the basis of exclusion in other aspects of l i f e . In this manner Oriental British subjects were disqualified from voting in Dominion elections, and Orientals generally were barred from the practices of law and pharmacy in British Columbia. They could not be employed by contractors engaged in provincial public works, or by companies holding Crown timber leases. They were being gradually squeezed out of the fishing industry by the withholding of licences by the Federal Department of Marine and Fisheries (1957: 34). Another author comments on the social effects of these legal constraints: In view of strict legislation, and in view of the 'social c l i mate' that existed during this phase of Chinese immigration (or non-immigration) the emergence and persistence of a strictly . Chinese quarter in the City of Vancouver is not surprising. The legislation tended to act as a further coercive and cohesive force upon the Chinese, who had already begun to live together in the compact settlement of "Chinatown" (Cho and Leigh 1972: 71). Thus, considering the combined weight of the legal discrimination and the social and personal affronts that the Chinese endured during this period, i t is no wonder that in spite of the hiatus in immigration, the Chinese in Vancouver continued to be predominantly oriented toward their homeland rather than toward the host society. By the end of this period, however, many Chinese, especially those born here, yearned for a more permanent and egalitarian status in Canada. The repeal of the Exclusion Act in 1947 marked the beginning of a period in which assimilation became a real alternative for the Chi-  41  nese.  Even for those Chinese who did not wish to become assimilated,  however, the repeal of the 1923 Immigration Act was an occasion for joy. Families were reunited; residential patterns began to change, and Chinatown soon became less of a ghetto. V.  1947 to 1967;  Growth and Development - The Sponsorship System  In 1946, the Liberal cabinet formed a sub-committee to consider the rather urgent problem of post-war immigration to Canada.  Be-  cause of post-war dislocation, immigration suddenly became a high priority.  Hawkins (1972: 90-91) outlines the following accomplishments of  the committee:  (1) i t widened the categories for admission of relatives  "since there was an urgent need for this on humanitarian grounds;" (2) i t suggested the repeal of the 1923 Chinese Immigration Act and placed the Chinese under the same s t i l l very restrictive clause as other Asians; (3) i t formulated emergency measures to bring refugees and displaced persons to Canada; and (4) i-it composed a post-war immigration policy that was outlined by Prime Minister MacKenzie King on May 1, 1947. King's 1947 statement is one of the most significant policy statements on immigration in recent Canadian history.  In terms of Asian  immigration, i t s significance lies in his insistence that fairly stringent restrictions on Asian immigration must remain in effect so as to avoid "a fundamental alteration" in the character of the Canadian population (Hawkins 1972: 93).  The government and the people of Canada were op-  posed, according to King, to "large-scale immigration from the Orient" (ibid.).  As a result, Oriental immigration for the next sixteen years  was limited to close relatives.  In spite of these restrictions, the  Chinese population in Vancouver doubled between 1951 and 1961, and the  42  need for labour in the primary industries and in the skilled occupations from 1946 to 1957 made immigration to Canada generally attractive (ibid.). The Chinese community in Vancouver underwent rapid changes during this period. A sudden increase in population, the re-establishment of many Chinese families, and the lessening of discrimination had great impact on the community.  By 1949, the Chinese were permitted to seek  public office and were "no longer subjected to municipal, provincial or federal disfranchisement" (Wai 1970: 78).  In 1957 Douglas Jung, a Pro-  gressive Conservative, became the f i r s t Chinese to be elected to the federal parliament.  Because of greater access to formal Canadian p o l i t i c a l  procedures, the role of internal community leaders became somewhat diminished from former times.  In general, assimilation began to assume a  positive value for many Chinese, and the "sojourner mentality" (see below) came to be more and more restricted to the pre-1923 immigrants. The extreme pro-assimilationist attitude, however, was limited to a small number of Chinese, predominantly represented by the Canadianborn group, or tu-sheng [tou-sang].  It was during this period that dis-  tinctions among immigrants assumed great significance in the structure of the community.  The Chinese themselves recognized three groups:  (1)  the early immigrants who came to British Columbia before 1923; (2) their Canadian-born offspring; and (3) recent arrivals from the Orient.  By  1961, Wai (1970) estimates that 39.5% of the Chinese population was Canadian-born, many of whom no longer wished to live in or around Chinatown. Thus, i t is also in this period that the geographic boundaries of the Chinese community become blurred.  43  The f i r s t group, the early immigrants, can be largely characterized by what Rose Hum Lee terms "the sojourner mentality" (Lee 1960: 69).  The phenomenon of the "sojourner mentality" originated at a time  when the primary purpose of a migrant Chinese was to amass a certain amount of wealth and return home as soon as possible.  Because of this  objective, these immigrants sought employment that yielded liquid assets and were intent on retaining Chinese customs to as great an extent as possible.  The latter objective was not that d i f f i c u l t to achieve given  the fact that these individuals typically migrated after childhood, when their cultural values were well engrained, and that they were usually ostracized by Westerners and denied access to crucial institutions when they got here.  Due to various circumstances such as revolution in China  and the failure to realize adequate savings, many of the "sojourners" could not attain their objective of returning to China and have since integrated, but not assimilated, to Canadian society. The offspring of these early immigrants, only about 30% of the Chinese community in the 1960's, exhibited very different attitudes toward Canada from those of their elders.  Although greatly influenced  by the Chinese cultural tradition, Canada was their home. They received the benefits of universal education and wereooften urged by their parents to achieve in areas formerly barred to Chinese.  Some of them became  lawyers, doctors, or professionals of other sorts.  This group, called  tu-sheng [tou-sang], l i t e r a l l y "native born", usually married other tusheng.  Occasionally they would marry a recently arrived Chinese immi-  grant from Hong Kong, or even a Westerner, but this was fairly atypical.  44  In addition, this group often preferred to live outside of Chinatown, perhaps to escape the lower-class, unassimilated image that outsiders usually maintained of Chinatown residents. The third group in the community, the recently arrived immigrants, were in the early 1960's usually the wives, children, or other relatives of previously established Chinese who had been left behind in the early years of immigration and then prohibited from immigrating during the closure from 1923 to 1947.  Up until 1962, in fact, a l l Chi-  nese immigrants had to be sponsored to gain admission to Canada. These migrants were usually fairly traditional in orientation, often having been born and raised in rural China, but migrating via Hong Kong. Interaction between these immigrants and the tu-sheng group was not extensive when there were no kin relations.  After 1967, the social organiza-  tion of the Chinese community was made even more complex by the influx of more highly skilled, independent, immigrants from Hong Kong.  The  impact of these migrants on the community w i l l be taken up in the next section of this chapter. With respect to politics of China, most Chinese residing in Canada during the period 1947 to 1967 were either pro-Nationalist or neutral; very few were actively pro-Peking.  Erickson characterizes this  last group as "a small set of young men with more racial or national pride than Marxism who pursue harmless activities in two small but active associations" (1966: 68).  Of course the fact that Canada had not yet  recognized mainland China probably discouraged many Chinese from voicing pro-Peking sentiments.  45  In 1961,  the Chinese population of Vancouver was 15,223, mak-  ing i t the largest Chinese community in Canada at that time.  Cho and  Leigh estimate for this period that the Chinatown area contained at  >  least 50% of the Chinese population of Vancouver, also noting, however, that the community had become progressively less segregated over the years (1972: 72).  This indicates that the Chinese had undoubtedly been  residentially segregated during their i n i t i a l period in Canada.  The  Chinatown area itself was composed of two sections, a commercial district and a residential district, the whole of which was bounded on the west by Carrall Street, on the east by Campbell Avenue, on the north by Powell Street, and on the south by False Creek and Prior Street.  The area en-  closed consisted of about f i f t y blocks. The commercial section of Chinatown could again be divided into two sections, the dividing line being Main Street. Street were Chinese establishments  West of Main  that catered predominantly to tourists  and Euro-Canadians, while the commercial sector east of Main Street was more solely patronized by Chinese.  This part of Chinatown has been des-  cribed in the following manner: In the latter area, stores are more oriented to the Chinese community i t s e l f , and food stores, herb stores, and less expensive cafes predominate. This is therpart of commercial Chinatown that retains many of the old "inward looking" functions, serving the residential community (Cho and Leigh 1972: 77). Immediately adjacent to the commercialldistricts lay a large residential area in which Chinese were the main residents but in which other ethnic groups were also represented.  The houses in this area were  typically two-storey wooden-frame buildings, old and run-down - an inevit-  46  able result of the "industrial" zoning of the district which made i t very difficult for home owners to secure mortgages for home improvement (Cho and Leigh 1972: 75).  In the early sixties, there were few lawns or  parks in the area, and the fields in the public school and the parks were cemented. In spite of the fact that the city was not overly concerned with making the "backyard" of Chinatown more attractive, the v i t a l i t y of commercial Chinatown was then, as i t i s now, marked. Weekend mornings teemed with activity, the best produce on display and the streets crowded with shoppers.  A significant number of merchants enjoyed profitable  business, and new investments in both commercial sectors - i.e., the Chinese and the Western - were common. Restaurants hosted frequent evening banquets of Chinese celebrating one or the other of improtant f e s t i vals and observances. Chinese voluntary associations also underwent fundamental changes during this period.  One author has characterized this series  of changes as a loss of "political machine" characteristics, meaning that the associations no longer acted as the exclusive intermediary between the sub-group and the political system, and that they exerpeienced a decrease in effective political authority (Wai 1970: 3).  This charac-  terization is no doubt valid, and the associational network at this time can no longer be said to represent the community in i t s entirety. It was, however, s t i l l important to large segments of the population and in times of c r i s i s .  From data collected in the early 1960's, we know that  around this time there were over 80 Chinese associations in Vancouver of quite diverse nature (see below, Chapter III).  47  Finally, in spite of the fact that the role of unofficial community leaders was challenged by the greater access that Chinese had to formal Canadian leadership positions, internal leaders continued to have wide acceptance.  When the Canadian government, from the municipal to the  federal branches, really wanted to get something done, i t had no choice but to deal with them. Furthermore, since the leadership system was s t i l l very closely tied to the associational network, the associations themselves retained significance in the eyes of the wider society. VI.  1967 to Present: Impact of the Point System In 1962, a point system was developed in which s k i l l was made  the most important criterion in selecting new ^immigrants to Canada. With some exceptions, like the small clause which stipulated that Europeans could sponsor a wider range of relatives than most Asians, overt racial discrimination in the legislation i t s e l f was greatly lessened (Hawkins 1972: 11).  In 1967, the Department of Manpower and Immigra-  tion replaced the Department of Citizenship and Immigration, creating "a firm manpower orientation" in Canadian immigration policy (Hawkins 1972: 52).  Of course, given the fact that many migrants have l i t t l e  opportunity to become skilled, a manpower orientation is s t i l l implicitly racist in i t s effects, but these aspects were not at issue.  From 1961  to 1971, the population of Chinese in Vancouver doubled, and from 1964 to 1968 Chinese migration to Canada as a whole increased at least by 50% (Department of Citizenship and Immigration, Immigration Statistics, 19641968). decade.  Table IIC gives a breakdown of Chinese population in Vancouver by  48  TABLE IIC Population of Chinese in Vancouver by Decade, 1911-1971  Source:  Date  Number  1911  3,559  1921  6,484  1931  13,011  1941  6,065  1951  8,729  1961  15,223  1971  30,640  Census of Canada, 1911-1971. By 1967, the social organization of the Chinese community in  Vancouver had undergone fundamental changes.  It is impossible to fully  document a l l the effects of this new legislation due to lack of space and data; however, some of the more obvious and radical changes have been the following.  While prior to 1962, only sponsored immigrants were  allowed admittance, there is now a great influx of independent Chinese migrants.  As Vivian Lai has remarked, "Chinese immigration is at this  time undoubtedly bringing a new type of Chinese migrant to Canada" (V. Lai 1971: 121).  Lai's study also gives us several important indica-  tions as to the characteristics of these "new" migrants.  Firstly, 40% of  Lai's sample of new male migrants in Toronto had post-graduate training, 50% of her total sample thought they could write English fairly fluently, and most indicated that they had come for permanent settlement (1971: 124).  Secondly, the majority of her sample were Chinese who had been  49  born in China but who had lived in Hong Kong from six to twenty-five years.  Finally, in spite of the fact that these migrants generally have  a high educational level, they experienced some status dislocation upon migration but are in general making "a highly successful adaptation" (1971: 123). A similar study on these new types of Chinese migrants in Vancouver is yet to be undertaken; however, the preliminary data for Vancouver suggest that in spite of the more cosmopolitan attitudes of these new migrants, Chinese associations s t i l l play an important role for them. Recent research, for instance, has uncovered at least 60 to 80 new associations that have been established since the mid-sixties, most of them quite different in character from the traditional clan and locality associations of earlier periods. In particular, there has been an amazing upsurge in the prevalence of martial arts associations.  These are  also important in the context of urban Hong Kong, and transplanted into the context of the Vancouver Chinese community* they perform important functions for young migrants from Hong Kong (Johnson 1971a: 141-143). Also relevant to the changing nature of the community in the 1970's is the development of new attitudes towards the People's Republic of China.  Canada's recognition of China in 1970 was undoubtedly instru-  mental in the creation of these new attitudes. Given the fact that Chinese residents of Vancouver are not a homogeneous group, i t is impossible to generalize to what extent the Vancouver Chinese as a whole continue traditional practices. and  In 1969, Cho  Leigh sampled 125 Chinese households, verifying their hypotheses  50  that the Chinatown Chinese were the most apt to celebrate Chinese festivals, speak Chinese most of the time, and patronize the Chinese associations (1972: 79).  They also suggested that the Chinese outside China-  town were to a greater extent locally born and educated, better off f i nancially, and more "assimilated" socially (1972: 79).  Place of resi-  dence, however, is only one of many variables of interest in the study of assimilation and integration. As I have suggested above, such variables as place of birth, period of immigration, length of residence in Hong Kong, educational and occupational specialization are also significant.  Some of these issues w i l l be discussed with relation to the  leaders of the Chinese community in Chapters IV and V. Some traditional practices have been given up, even by the most traditional Chinese.  Marriages, for instance, are usually Canadian-  ized, although some Chinese indicated that wealthy members of the community often give two weddings for their children, one Canadian and one Chinese.  Traditional mourning rites have also been simplified by most  Chinese, the three-year mourning period being reduced considerably. This very brief outline of recent changes has been introduced only to indicate that changes in immigration legislation are s t i l l greatly influencing the structure of the community and to provide a bit of hindsight from which to view the central topic of discussion, the nature of the community in the sixties.  In one sense, the role of China-  town has become less important because the Chinese community is no longer t e r r i t o r i a l , but in another sense, i t s social organization has become more and more complex as i t has had to accommodate to increasingly  51  different types of people.  The Chinese associations have played an  important role in creating and maintaining the complexity of Chinese community social organization, and i t is their historical significance and structure that is the topic of Chapter III.  The account of recent  developments in the Vancouver Chinese has been necessarily brief, but i t is hoped that the short history provided here w i l l serve to impress on the reader the struggle that the Chinese have faced in their adaptation to Canadian society.  52  FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER II  There i s , however, some evidence to indicate that a sizeable Chinese community did exist in Vancouver prior to this time. For instance, the Wells Fargo and Company Directory of Chinese Businesses l i s t s twenty-nine Chinese business establishments operative in Vancouver in 1882, at least half of which seemed to have dealt with a Chinese clientele. Without further detailed historical research into this matter, i t i s impossible to ascertain specifically at what point during the latter half of the 19th century an integrated community of Chinese began to exist in Vancouver. This information was acquired from an interview with Seto YingShek, a prominent, well-known, and scholarly member of the Vancouver Chinese community. San-Yi [Sam-Yap] and Si-Yi [Sei-Yap] are two areas in China that include most of the counties, or xian, from which the migrants typically originate. This material was taken from a periodical issued by the Hon Hsing Athletic Club and was translated from the Chinese by Jennie and Bessie Yu.  53  CHAPTER III VOLUNTARY ASSOCIATIONS AND THEIR EMERGENCE IN VANCOUVER'S CHINESE COMMUNITY  In this chapter, I trace the development of voluntary associations in Vancouver's Chinese community from the time directly following the Gold Rush when the Chinese formed a small and isolated settlement in Vancouver to the end of the sixties when there were over 20,000 Chinese residents dispersed throughout the city.  The associations and  the role they played in the community underwent many changes during this time.  Some associations changed in their orientation and in their basis  of recruitment; others changed in the degree of influence they exercised in the community.  Near the end of this historical period, new types of  associations emerged that challenged the existing hierarchy of associations, and throughout the period the associations were continuously realigned with respect to new political issues. Freedman has offered a general hypothesis concerning the effect of an increase in scale and complexity of the community on the development of associations among urban South-east Asian Chinese which is of relevance to the Vancouver Chinese.  He states that:  The associations which in a small scale and relatively undeveloped settlement express social, economic, and p o l i t i c a l links in an undifferentiated form tend, as the scale and the complexity of the society increase, to separate into a network of associations which are comparatively specialized in their functions and the kind of solidarity they express (1967: 47-48).  54  Thus, he places the Chinese community of urban Sarawak as described by T'ien in the 1950's at one end of a continuum in which a "simple and relatively small-scale overseas settlement" exhibits associations that perform multi-functional roles in the spheres of economics, politics, and social l i f e and that merge the principles of shared dialect, clanship and locality, while he places contemporary Singapore at the other end of the  continuum because i t exhibits a greater number of associations with  more specialized functions, and consequently, more overlap among members.  It is this criterion of cross-cutting memberships that creates a  network of associations in contemporary Singapore, which in Freedman's view, is "presumably the model of the most developed form of immigrant Chinese settlement in Southeast Asia" (1967: 44). Unlike Sarawak, this network can be shown to be "relatively independent of economic groupings and to some extent of p o l i t i c a l groupings" (1967: 44). Willmott has stated that "the number of Chinese associations in Vancouver places i t toward the complex end of the continuum suggested by Freedman" (1970a: 147).  Indeed, by the 1960's, Vancouver's Chinese  settlement boasted over eighty associations that formed a network by virtue of cross-cutting memberships and interlocking directorships. Furthermore, this network was, as Freedman describes for contemporary Singapore, relatively independent of economic groupings. For early periods, however, the community f e l l more towards the end of the continuum characterized by Sarawak.  For instance, the associations were more multi-  functional in nature, performing economic as well as p o l i t i c a l and cul-  55  tural functions, and there was some correlation between place of origin in China and occupation  (Willmott 1964: 34),  Although compared to  Sarawak the number of associations in the nineteenth-century  Vancouver  community was rather large in proportion to the population, their nature differed qualitatively from later times. In addition to the increasing specialization of function that the associations in Vancouver underwent as the community became larger and more dispersed, some associations reorganized themselves on more universalis tic bases.  On the basis of data collected on religious asso-  ciations in Singapore, Marjorie Topley abstracts two broad groups of Chinese organizations on the basis of particularism and universalism. She states that: In one group, membership is based exclusively on personal identity. In other words, the associations are "particularistic". They are also multi-purpose, covering a wide range of interests, mainly economic....Associations of the other group are open to " a l l Chinese", that is to say, they tend towards universalism in membership. As main qualifications for entry they stress common interests in religious matters and belief in a particular ideology....As secondary interests they pursue philanthropic and cultural activities (1967: 56-57). In Vancouver, however, the historical development of associations cannot simply be characterized as one in which relatively particularist associations were replaced by relatively universalistic ones. Rather, the f i r s t two associations to be estbalished - the Chee Gung Tong [Zhi-gong Tang] and the Chinese Benevolent Association [Zhong-hua HuiGuan] - were based on relatively universalistic principles. It was only after these were established and dealt with the external threats facing the Chinese as a whole that the more particularistic associations based  56  on surname and native place of origin began to assume a significant role in the community.  Later, around the advent of the f i f t i e s , the authority  of these particularistic and traditionist associations was challenged by the renewed appeal of older fraternal societies and by the rise of new universalis tic associations.  These latter associations, which were more  modernist in orientation, were not integrated into the traditional hierarchy of associations and offered competition to i t . It is essentially this process of increasing differentiation and complexity of the associational network that i s the underlying theme of this chapter.  I attempt to document this process by f i r s t describing  the kind of associations in existence in the 1960's and then by taking each important association in turn and exploring its historical development.  The dichotomies of traditionist/modernist, particularistic/univer-  salistic, and functionally diffuse/specific are important to the understanding of this process, but i t should be stressed thatt'these are heuristic devices that " f i t " the data better for certain historical periods than for others.  This is a result of the fact, of course, that they are  ideal types being applied to concrete historical situations. Finally, I demonstrate near the end of the chapter how the increasing scale and complexity of the community in the 1960's and the changed nature of the relationship between the Chinese community and the host society resulted in a network of associations that was  comparatively  specialized in i t s function and that was defined with respect to interlocking directorships and factional alignment based on wider political issues.  57  Chinese Voluntary Associations in Vancouver in the 1960's The number and diversity of Chinese associations in Vancouver is quite remarkable.  To those unfamlil-iarwith overseas Chinese social  organization, the multitude of associations, clubs, committees, and organizations that the Chinese community exhibits is often perplexing. Moreover, since the declared purposes and names of the associations are sometimes misleading, outsiders have l i t t l e way of knowing what functions the associations serve.  What follows is an attempt to clarify the nature  of Chinese associations in Vancouver. At f i r s t glance, the Vancouver Chinese seem to use almost every principle of grouping imaginable to form associations; actually, however, these principles are relatively few in number. Willmott has noted, for instance, that for p o l i t i c a l analysis the approximately eighty associations in existence in the 1960's could be grouped into essentially four categories:  clan, locality, fraternal, and community (1964: 34).  Because the associations that did not f i t into the above categories were of minimal p o l i t i c a l significance, Willmott placed them in a residual category of "other", including among these music societies, youth clubs, gambling clubs, and reading rooms (1964: 34).  Upon further investiga-  tion, I have found that these miscellaneous societies can be grouped into the following categories: 1 and commercial.  athletic, charitable, leisure, alumni,  Therefore, I separate the eighty associations in exis-  tence into nine categories, of which the f i r s t four are the most crucial. In addition to the types of associations outlined above, the situation is made more complex by the boards of Chinese language schools,  58  Chinese newspapers, and the Mount St. Joseph's Hospital, which are of course not formal associations themselves but which nevertheless tion in a manner quite analogous to that of the associations.  func-  Fur-  thermore, many of these institutions are formally connected with specific associations, and their executive boards exhibit a concentration of particularly influential leaders from a variety of organizations.  Table  IIIA presents a l l the associations operative in the Vancouver Chinese community in the early 1960's, as well as "those institutions, such as Chinese language schools and churches, that were relevant to the associational structure. It can be seen from Table IIIA that, similar to other overseas Chinese communities, there was only one association in Vancouver that aspired to community-wide representation - the Chinese Benevolent Association - while there were five associations based on fraternal principles, eleven associations based on native place in China, and over twenty surname associations.  In addition to these, which comprised the most  important associations in the community, there were a variety of associations dealing with commercial, musical, social, and charity interests. The commercial associations, although potentially significant from a political point of view, had gradually decreased in influence as the economic and political systems of the community became increasingly differentiated. Before the issue of how these associations are interrelated can be explored, however, I must f i r s t explain the nature of specific associations in more detail, and the historical conditions that influenced their development.  TABLE IIIA Chinese Associations in Vancouver in the Early 1960's ENGLISH  MANDARIN (PIN-YIN)  CHARACTERS  Community Zhong-hua Hui-guan  Chinese Benevolent Association Fraternal  Zhi-gong Tang  Chinese Freemasons  Hua-fu Shi-zi Hui  Chinatown Lions  Hua-ren Hui-bing Hui  Chinese-Canadian Veterans Chinese Elks  Guo-min Dang Zong-shi Bu  Chinese Nationalist League  ^ 4%^ ^  Clan  Zhao-lun Gong-suo  Chau Luen Society Chan Wing Chwun Fung Lun Tong Gee How Oak Tin Association  Chen-ying-chuan Tang  it  4*  Feng-lun Tang  *  £ £ % iL  *\  Zhi-xiao-du-qin Gong-suo Zheng Rong-yang Tang  Jung Wing Young Association  Wu Xu'-shan Tang  Ing Suey Sun Tong  Gao-yang Shu-bao She  Ko Young Reading Room  Lin Xi-he Tang  Lam Sai Hor Society Lee Clan Association Leong Chung How Tong Lew M Way Society u  4A  ^  ^  Li-shi Gong-suo Liang Zhong-xiao Tang Liao Wu-wei Tang  TABLE IIIA (Continued) CHARACTERS  ENGLISH  MANDARIN (PIN-YIN)  Clan (continued) Lore Yee Jang Tong  Luo Yu-zhang Tang  Lung Kong Tien Yee  Long-gan Gong-suo  Mah Society  &  & '** #f  Nam Young Tong  & it &  *  Ma-shi Gong-suo Nan-yang Zong-tang  Oylin Society  Ai-lian Gong-suo  Quon Lung Said Tong  Guan Long-Xi Tang  Sue Yuen Tong  & -4 at-  f  Su-yuan Zong-tang  Wong Kong Har Tong  Huang Jiang-xia Tang  Wong Wun San  Huang Yun-shan Gong-suo  Yee Fong Toy Tong  Yu Feng-cai Tang  Lee Kwong Kai Society  L i Gang-xi Tang  Look Ming Reading Room  J&  4s »)  Ming Sun Reading Room  &  /f  %  (A % ti-  Lu-ming Bie-shu Min-xing Yue-bao She  Locality Sam Yap District Association  San-yi Tong-xiang Hui  Nam Hoy District Association  Han-hai Hui-Guan  Yue Shan Association  Yu-shan Gong-suo  Shoon Duck Association  Shuri-de Tang  Five Districts Association of H6ng Kong  |£ -$l  Wu-yi Gong-suo  Hoy Sun Ning Young  Tai-shan Ning-yang Guan  Hoy Ping District Association  Kai-ping Hui-guan  TABLE I HA  (Continued)  CHARACTERS  ENGLISH  MANDARIN (PIN-YIN)  Locality (continued) Yin Ping District Association  jg, 5^- ^  Kong Chow District Association  En-ping Hui  %~ f£  Gang-zhou Hui-guan  /  Shon Yee Benevolent Society Chung Shan Lung Jen Society  Chong-yi Hui  4$ )«) jft]  vj* Jj  Zhong-shan Long-zhen Tongxiang Hui  5  Athletic All Chinese Basketball League  jf^  Chinese Bowling Club Chinese Golf Club  %  Masonic Athletic . lu _  &  Hai Fung Association  j£  Hon Hsing Athletic Club Tai-Chi Chuan Exercise Club  Lan Lian  I^^Mh  Bao-ling-qiu Hui  m K  Gao-er-fu-qiu Hui I f If ^  Min-zhi Dang Ti-yu Hui Hai-feng Hui  •y%4\W  HiT  Han-sheng Ti-yu Hui  J^&jfcM-  Tai-ji-quan She  Leisure Zhong-hua Tong-jun  Chung Wah Cubs and Scouts Chinese Varsity Club  1*1 >ff ^~  J a i - l i Tong-xue Hui  Chung Wah Youth League  'f  Zhong-hua Qing-nian Tuan  Overseas Chinese Students Association  ^ 'ill *3 iff ^  Ngai Lum Musical Society  Zhong-guo Tong-xue Hui  ^- Jfc ^  Y.W.C.A. - Pender Street Chinese Youth Association  ®  Nu-zi Qing-nian Hui  \ *  Qing-nian Lian-yi Hui *Mf # &  Y  i  _  l  i  n  Y  i  n  -  y  u  e  s  h  e  TABLE IIIA (Continued) ENGLISH  CHARACTERS  MANDARIN (PIN-YIN)  Leisure (continued) Jin Wan Sing Musical Society  ZneMhuaiSheng Yasn-yue She  Ching Won Musical Society  Qing-yun Yin-yue She  Chinese Art Society Chinese New Year Festival Committee  Xin-nian Qing-zhu Chou-bei Xiao-zu  Commercial B.C. Lower Mainland Cooperative Association  Ping-yuan Nong-ye He-zuo She  Strathcona Property Owners and Tenants Association  Shi-da-kong-na Ye-zhu Yu Zhu-ke Xie-hui  Chinese Chamber of Commerce  Zhong-hua Shang-ye Hui  Chinese Trade Workers Association  Zhong-guo Zhi-gong Hui  Chinatown Development Association  Yun-gao-hua Hua-fu Fan-rong Hui  Charity Charlie Kent Golden Anniversary Charity Foundation Community Chest Red Feather/Red Cross Free China Relief Association Alumni North American Alumni of Poy Ching  Pei-zhen Tong-xue Hui  TABLE I HA  (Continued)  CHARACTERS  ENGLISH  MANDARIN (PIN-YIN)  Alumni (continued) Chung Shan University Alumni Association  Zhong-shan Da-xue Tongxue Hui  Jen Guan Alumni Association  Zhen-guang Tong-xue Hui  Kuangchow University Alumni  Guang-zhou Da-xue Xiaoyou Hui  RELATED INSTITUTIONS Chinese Religious Groups Chinese Anglican Church Chinese Catholic Center Christ Church of China  ^"/^^./^/f^  Hua-ren Sheng-gong Hui  ^  Hua-ren Tian-zhu-j iao  -|&_  Chinese Lutherans  Zhong-hua Ji-du-j iao Hua-ren Lu-de Jiao-hui  Chinese Pentacostals  Hua-ren Shen-zhao Hui  Chinese Presbyterians Chinese United Church  <f ^  ^  if  -|>C /^v/f*" Xie-he Hu  Hui  Hue-ren Zhang-lao Hui Xie-he Hui  Chinese Language Schools St.  Xavier School (Catholic Center)  Chinese Public School (K.M.T.) Tai  Kung Charity School (Freemasons)  Mon Keong Chinese School (Wongs)  Yun-fu Hua-r^iao Gong-li Xue-xiao Da-gong Y i Xue-xiao Wen-qiang Xue-xiao  TABLE IIIA (Continued) ENGLISH  CHARACTERS  MANDARIN (PIN-YIN)  Chinese Language Newspapers The Chinese Times Chinese Voice Daily New Republic Daily Hospitals Mount St. Joseph's Hospital,  *. >%. >* fa.  * fa  Da-Han Gong-Bao Qiao-Sheng Ri-Bao Xin Min-Guo Ri-Bao  65  The Fraternal Associations The associations within this category are a diverse group. They range from an organization whose roots reach back to 16th  century  China to one that is actually a branch of a wider Canadian association but whose membership is nevertheless Chinese.  Specifically, this cate-  gory includes the Chinese Freemasons, the Kuomintang, and the Chinese Elks, Lions, and Veterans.  Although the Kuomintang is the only one of  these that is overtly political in nature, i t has been classed with the others because i t also is largely based on a fraternal solidarity among its members. As Willmott states, "...aside from i t s participation in the politics of China," the Kuomintang association " f u l f i l l s the same functions as the Freemasons in grouping the Chinese across the lines of locality and clan" (1964: 34). a.  The Chinese Freemasons.  This organization was the f i r s t  to be established by the Chinese in British Columbia.  It has no connec-  tion with Western freemasonry, but stems from an old-fraternal order in China that originated in the 16th Century with the aim of overthrowing the Manchu dynasty to restore the Ming dynasty (Lyman et a l . 1964:  352).  It assumed the English name Freemasons around 1910, probably to combat its former status as a secret society.  The Freemasons' sister organi-  zations in Hong Kong, in fact, are s t i l l secret (and illegal) and maintain few, i f any, relations with Chinese Freemasons in North America (see Morgan 1960).  The Chinese name for this association is "Chee Gung  Tong" [Zhi-gong Tang] and when referring to i t s role in the Vancouver Chinese community before 1910, I w i l l refer to i t by this name.  66  I use two different names to refer to this association during different periods in the community's history to reflect the immense changes that i t has undergone since i t s establishment in British Columbia in 1862.  From i t s beginnings in the province as an authoritarian and  powerful secret society, the organization developed into a modernist and politically liberal group.  In the sixties, the Freemasons were undoubtedly  one of the three most important groups in Chinatown.  One source attribu-  ted i t s power and influence in the modern community to extensive property 2 holdings in the Chinese district. While this was certainly a factor underlying their success, another reason why the Freemasons were able to retain their prestige throughout the sixties was that they maintained a fine balance between the preservation of Chinese heritage and the creation of a "Canadian Mosaic Cultural Pattern" (See Appendix I: the Chinese Freemasons of Canada).  Constitution and By-Laws of  Concerned both with the problems of  integration and assimilation but nevertheless anxious to preserve certain aspects of the Chinese tradition, the Freemasons were one of the few organizations in the community that attracted a l l three types of Vancouver Chinese:  the early immigrants, the Canadian-born, and the recent  migrants. The Freemasons were also able to attract a strong membership because they attempted to maintain a "neutral" position with respect to both Chinese and Canadian politics.  Referring to Chinese politics, for  instance, one member of the Freemasons stated that the organization was against "dictators" of any kind. The "neutral" position that the Free-  67  masons voiced, however, was in actuality anti-Kuomintang without being pro-Communist.  The reasons underlying this position are examined in the  section dealing with the history of the Chee Gung Tong in British Columbia.  With respect to Canadian politics, the Freemasons attempted to  concern themselves predominantly with community projects.^, not national politics.  As one member stated, "If anyone is interested in that [na-  tional politics] they can join the CCF or Social Credit. 3 projects - that's what the Freemasons should do."  But community  In the 1960's, the Freemasons appealed to a broad section of Chinese and were concerned with the pursuit of cultural and philanthropic activities.  Thus, the organization conformed to a great degree to what  Topley described as the "universalistic" type of association (1967: 56).  As a main qualification for entry, for instance, the Freemasons  stressed belief in the ideology of love and justice (symbolized by the characters ren materials).  \z~  > d Zi a n  4^'  > both frequently used in Freemason  The original form of the association in British Columbia,  however, was quite different from i t s modern character. b.  History of the Chinese Freemasons in British Columbia.  Chinese who journeyed from California to Barkerville, B.C.,  The  in the mid-  dle of the 19th century found themselves in a strange and often hostile milieu, without their families and the benefit of a wide kinship network, and with no one to look after their interests. Perhaps this accounts for the establishment of the Chee Gung Tong in the gold fields of Barkerville as early as 1862,  thus making i t the f i r s t association to be established  f  68 i  by the Chinese in Canada.  The Chee Gung Tong was probably brought up from  California, and in its new setting created bonds of fictive kinship among its members, provided mutual aid for the early Chinese settlers, 4 and protected them from the ever-present threat of white exploitation. A recently discovered and translated set of rules from a branch of the Chee Gung Tong in 1882 gives us some insight into i t s early functions.  The rules are concerned with the conditions under which disputes  are to be settled, the forbidding of members to appeal to legal courts for aid or to collaborate with outsiders to collect debts, and the regulation of the area within which mining was allowed and the size of mines to be alloted to one person (Lyman et a l . 1964:  534).  In addition, the rules  allude to stringent punishments for the failure to abide by i t s regulations . By 1897, 1903,  the Chee Gung Tong was established in Victoria, and by  the organization "had been hierarchically organized with local,  regional, and provincial divisions" (Lyman et al. 1964: including a branch in Vancouver.  Now  532), presumably  transplanted into a growing urban  context, the Chee Gung Tong assumed diverse functions, including:  (1)  the provision of financial assistance and welfare for members; (2) the running of youth programs and "male oriented" recreational services such as gambling, opium dens, and brothels; and (3) the settling of disputes between Chinese, negotiation of settlements, and the hiring of lawyers in case of Chinese-white disputes (Wai 1970:  37).  Another source points to a growing conflict between the prorevolutionary and anti-revolutionary factions within the Chee Gung Tong  69  and notes that the pro-revolutionary faction soon won over the majority.  5  By the time that Sun Yat-Sen made his f i r s t trip to Vancouver in 1897, he found ready ideological and material support for his cause within the Chee Gung Tong. In 1910 and 1911, Sun Yat-Sen again visited Vancouver and Victoria.  At this time, he modified the constitution of the Chee Gung  Tong and was instrumental in transforming i t from a secret society to an open p o l i t i c a l association: Wai 1970).  the Chinese Freemasons (Sedgwick 1973: 119;  Sedgwick further reports that by changing some of the regu-  lations of the Chee Gung Tong, Sun attracted converts from the Empire Reform Association, one of the f i r s t associations to exist for a predominantly p o l i t i c a l cause in the history of the Victoria Chinese community (1973: 120).  One of the principal ways in which the Chinese community  here contributed to Sun's cause was by mortgaging Chee Gung Tong realties; over $150,000 was raised in this manner, one of the largest contributions to this cause from any overseas Chinese community (Willmott 1970b: 48). In 1917, the Dart Coon She was organized as a sub-organization of the Chee Gung Tong that included only the most loyal members of the association.  It is not completely clear why such an organization was needed  at this time, but i t appears that some time after the establishment of the Republic of China in 1912 a conflict developed between the Kuomintang (K.M.T.) and the Chee Gung Tong over the refusal of the new Nationalist government in China to honour certain pledges of participation made to them before the revolution (Willmott 1970b: 49).  Thus, even today,  70  having declared their "neutrality", the Freemasons are noted for their opposition to the K.M.T. At any rate, by 1917, older members of the Freemasons were being wooed over to the K.M.T. and thus were considered "turncoats" by loyal Chee Gung  Tong members.  The Dart Coon She appar-  ently functioned to separate this inner core from the rest of the members and thus to permit a purge in the membership.  °  During this period of exclusion, from 1923 to 1947, the Chee Gung Tong/Kuomintang conflict continued and provided the basis for extensive factional alignment within the Vancouver community as well as in 6 smaller Chinese communities throughout British Columbia.  It was during  the c i v i l war in China (1946-49), however, that the Freemasons f i r s t publicly declared their neutrality, a daring step even then considering the strongly pro-K.M.T. alignment of the U.S. and Canada. At a world congress in Shanghai in 1946, the Freemasons called for cooperation between the Nationalists and the Communists. In reviewing the history of the Chee Gung Tong in British Columbia, a gradual trend from relative particularism to relative universalism, as well as a reduction in the scope of functions assumed, can be seen.  First, in i t s earliest form in B.C.,  the Chee Gung Tong was a  secret society, with elaborate initiation rites, and i t was more concerned about the welfare of i t s own members than that of the Chinese in general. In fact, one informant states that the impetus to form a community-rwide organization in Vancouver f i r s t arose as a response to Chee Gung Tong complaints that i t could not be expected to be held responsible for the actions of a l l Chinese, but just those of i t s members.  Secondly, the Chee  71  Gung Tong in its early phase was very functionally-diffuse.  It was  concerned with a l l aspects of a member's existence - economic, p o l i t i c a l , and social - and had a complex body of regulations that "set out in precise and detailed instructions the domestic arrangements under which fellow-members shall live together" (Lyman et al. 1964: 534). In modern times the Freemasons, no longer being an underground society, take pride i n the broad base of their membership.  The scope of  their functions had been reduced from former times, and in spite of their p o l i t i c a l origins, they presently view themselves strictly as a fraternal society.  The long heritage of the Chinese Freemasons, however, s t i l l  manifests i t s e l f in many of their present activities.  In the 1960's,  the Freemasons were not only hierarchically structured with national and local branches, but had developed quite a few subsidiary bodies to deal with the many functions that used to be handled by the Chee Gung Tong alone.  These related organizations include an athletic blub, a realty  division, a Chinese language school, a Chinese newspaper, and the Dart Coon Branch - whose origins have been described above.  Table IIIB pre-  sents the subsidiary organizations of the Freemasons as they existed in the early 1960's. c.  The Kuomintang Association.  The Kuomintang is the Nation-  alist Party of China and is currently in power on the island of Taiwan after fleeing the mainland following its defeat by the broad masses of the peasants led by the Chinese Communists in 1949.  In the 1960's, the  Kuomintang organization in Vancouver was politically conservative and  TABLE IIIB The Freemasons and Subsidiary Bodies In the Early Sixties CHARACTERS  ENGLISH NAME  CHINESE NAME  Chinese Freemasons National Headquarters of Canada  Hong Men Min Zhi Dang Zong Zhi Bu  & n & & 'l & t- %f  Chinese Freemasons Vancouver Branch  Hong Men Zhi Bu  M  Chinese Masonic Athletic Club  Min Zhi Dang T i Yu Hui  fa &  Hung Mood Dart Coon Association  Hong Men Da Quan Zhi She  Jd£ f ^ ^ ^ jL  Chinese Freemason Realty Division  Min Zhi Dang Shi Ye Bu  The Chinese Times  Da Han Gong Bao  Tai Kung Charity School  Da Gong Yi Xue  £ 4f  11  f  ]/&  %  73  traditionist in orientation, and held l i t t l e appeal for Canadian-born Chinese.  For some Chinese, however, i t gained prestige by virtue of the  fact that i t was a staunch defender of the Chinese tradition,that i t s general secretary was sent from Taiwan, and that i t maintained close relations with the Consulate, the body o f f i c i a l l y recognized by Canada. In the 1960's, its members were largely composed of China-born individuals and businessmen. It must be remembered, however, that the Kuomintang was o r i g i nally a progressive party formed after the overthrow of the Manchu dynasty in China in 1912. Hui ( l£l 5$.  Its predecessor, the revolutionary T'ung-meng ) . was established by Sun Yat-sen in 1905 in or-  der to facilitate this overthrow and establish a republic in China. Although by the 1960's the conflict between the Freemasons and the Kuomintang could be largely seen as one between liberalism and conservatism, the conflict originated at a time when this was really not the case. The history of the Kuomintang association in Vancouver is not known in much detail; however, i t has been established that the roots of the Vancouver Kuomintang association reach back to 1908, when a group of dedicated men in Victoriak affiliated themselves with the T'ung-meng Hui in order to distribute revolutionary material and effect p o l i t i c a l change.  After the success of the revolution in 1912, the organization  became a branch of the Kuomintang, and in 1923, the organization was legally established in Vancouver. As time went on, the nature of the Kuomintang in China deviated a great deal from the revolutionary party that Sun Yat-sen had founded and increasingly appealed to Chinese "heritage" to block reform and thwart  74  change (see Wright 19 71: 112). Developments in homeland politics therefore widened the gulf between the Freemasons and the Kuomintang organizations in Vancouver; however, the associations were antagonistic towards each other for local reasons as well.  The local issues that created  this antagonism probably included fights over the control of gambling interests in Chinatown and resentment on the part of the Freemasons about the increasing dominance of the Chinese Benevolent Association by the 7 Kuomintang.  There is some reason to believe, then, that subsequent to  the Kuomintang's formal establishment in Vancouver in 1923, the conflict between the Kuomintang and the Freemasons became more disassociated from homeland politics as these associations emerged as contending fraternal societies in Canada (Willmott 1970b: 49). The popularity of the Kuomintang association reached a height in the early 1940's, when i t had as many as 31 branches across Canada, but the association's popularity began to wane after the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949 and the Nationalists' removal from the mainland.  By the 1970's, the association's importance had dras-  tically diminished.  In the 1960's, however, although its base of member-  ship was not as large as that of the Freemasons, the Kuomintang was s t i l l considered an influential association by many Chinese, and the Freemason/ Kuomintang conflict was an important concern in the community. d.  The Chinese Lions, Elk's, and Veterans.  The Kuomintang  and Freemasons are both fraternal associations that stem from the immigrants' homeland.  Quite antithetical in nature to these associations, then,  were the Chinese branches of the Lions, Elks, and Veterans.  Recently  75  established, and oriented more toward the associational structure of the host society than to that of the Chinese community, these associations nevertheless played a very important role in that they provided an alternative to traditionist segmentary structure of associations that was characteristic of the early period.  These associations fur-  ther served to attract the participation of many influential secondgenerationrChinese,  and because of their modernist orientation, they  integrated second-generation Chinese as a whole into the associational structure. Traditional Chinese tended to reject the importance of the Chinese branches of the Lions, Elks, and Vets.  One traditional China-  born leader, for instance, remarked that these associations were "Canadiancontrolled" and therefore had l i t t l e prestige in Chinatown.  Another re-  marked, however, that because these associations could ignore the regulations and customs of the community they could "be more daring than the real Chinese organizations". in Chinatown.  Perhaps this lay the basis of their success  At any rate, the extent of "authenticity" of these associa-  tions was seen differently by different segments of the population, and the criterion of authenticity i t s e l f was of lesser importance to the Canadian-born.  The more "modernist" Chinese who participated in the asso-  ciational network did not demand that the associations they participate in have traditional precedent, and to these men such clubs as the Lions, Elks, and Vets served their purpose well. There is some indication that the membership of each of these service organizations correlated with common occupational interests.  One  76  member of the community, for instance, termed the Lions "a professional clique", and i t did appear that the Lion's Club attracted a greater proportion of professionals and men of affluence than did the Elks and Vets. Furthermore, the Elks seem to have been of white collar background, and the Vets more of working class and small shopkeeper background.  One  member of the community described the Elks in the following manner: They are new in the area, and composed of a different income bracket [from the Lions]....They have more working class people, most of whom never went university [sic]. It has about f i f t y members who are salesmen, clerks, self-employed service businessmen - like real estate and insurance. They have only one lawyer in the Elks, while the Lions have at least eight. Not since a very early period in the history of the community, when some occupational specialization according to native place was evident, has there been any indication of a particular class orientation within certain associations. trend for the future.  Perhaps this represents a significant  Furthermore, i t is a reflection of the fact that  the class structureoof the Chinese community has become considerably more complex since the early period of the community's history, when only two classes were operative:  merchant and labourer.  The Lions, Elks, and Vets were classed as "service organizations" by members of the community and, in contrast to fehelelan associations, were seen by the Chinese as one of the few types of associations to concern themselves with welfare over and above consideration of their own members. The Lions, in particular, led several important welfare drives in the community.  These were based more on the univer-  s a l i s t i c ideals of altruism and concern for humanity than on the narrower, and more particularistic, idea of providing for fellow-clansmen or fellow-  77  countrymen.  Again, this is an indication of their more "modernist"  character. The Clan Associations (Gong-Suo) In the early sixties, there were twenty-one clan associations in Vancouver.  These associations nominally served to represent a l l  Chinese of the same surname residing in Vancouver. Contrary to the West, ChMese surnames are extremely limited in number, only about 500 being operative in a l l of China.  In tradi-  tional China, a l l persons sharing a common surname were thought to share a common mythical ancestor, a belief which formed the ideological basis of the clan.  In the context of Vancouver of the early 1960's, however,  not a l l resident members of a clan recognized the Gong-suo's right to represent them. The clan associations, therefore, must be differentiated from the clan as i t operated in traditional China. Among overseas Chinese, agnatic kinship is significant as an organizational device, not in terms of lineage and clan, but in terms of associations based on the principles of surname or clan (Willmott 1964: 33).  In Southeastern China, the clan was often an outgrowth of an  intricate lineage system and functioned to link these lineages together in wider patrilineal groupings (Freedman 1958: 5).  Overseas, however,  the lineage system could not be replicated, and therefore the clan took over a different function, namely, as Freedman notes for the Singapore Chinese, to "bring together men who came from widely separated communities in China" (1967: 38).  78  The significant characteristics of clan associations overseas is that they are traditionist, that i s , oriented toward traditional Chinese values, and particularistic, that i s , based on relatively narrow loyalties and on ascribed statuses.  Because of these features, clan asso-  ciations in the modern Vancouver context were as a whole less influent i a l than the fraternal associations.  Specific clan associations, how-  ever, were s t i l l quite powerful and were rated among the five most influential associations in the community by important community leaders (see below:  Chapter III, The Network of Associations in the Early 1960's). In the sixties, about half of the clan associations in Van-  couver represented only one clan each, while the others each represented two or more. The relationship among clans united in the same association was typically based on a myth of alliance, usually involving a common distant ancestor who was seen to bind the clans together. cally speaking, however, the less commonly represented  Practi-  surnames had to  bind together for protection against the larger clans, which often attempted to control or exploit them. Table IIIC presents the clan associations operative in Vancouver in the sixties and the specific surnames 8 they represented. It is important to note that while in many overseas Chinese communities clan associations are segmented with respect to locality of origin and/or dialect differences this type of segmentation is at a mininum in Vancouver.  Three societies combine the principles of surname  and native place as criteria for membership - the Lee Kwong Kai Society [Li Gang-xi Tang], the Look Ming [Lu-ming Bie-Shu] and Ming Sun Reading  TABLE IIIC Clan Associations in the 1960's CLANS INCLUDED  ASSOCIATION Cantonese/English  Mandarin (pin-yin)  Characters  Cantonese  Mandarin (pin-yin)  Characters  Chau Luen Society  Zhao-lun Gong-suo  *l 4& % iff  Tam, Hui Tse, Yuen  Tan, Xu, Xie, Yuan  , ^  Chan Wing Chwun  Chen-ying-chuan Tang  Chan  Chen  Fung Lun Tong  Feng-lun-Tang  Seto, Tse  Si-tu, Xue  Gee How Oak Tin  Zhi-xiao-du Qin Gong-suo  Chan, Wu, Yun  Chen, Hu, Yuan  Jung Wing Young  Zheng Rong-yang Tang  Jung  Zheng  Ing Suey Sun Tong Wu Xu -shan Tang  Eng  Wu  1*  Ko Young Reading Room  Gao-yang Shu-bao She  Hui  Xu  it  Lam Sai Hor  Lin Xi-he Tang  Lam, Lim  Lin  Lee Clan Association  Li-shi Gong-suo  Lee  Li  Leong Chung How Tong  Liang Zhong-xiao Tang  Leong, Leung  Liang  Lew Mu Way  Liao Wu-wei Tang  Lew  Liao  Lore Yee Jang Tong  Luo Yu-zhang Tang  Lo  Luo  4 &  TABLE IIIC (Continued) ASSOCIATION  CLANS INCLUDED  Cantonese/English  Mandarin (pin-yin)  Characters  Lung Kong Tien Yee  Long-gan Gong-suo  ^  Mah Society  Ma-shi Gong-suo  ^ fa ffj"  Mah  Nam Young Tong  Nan-yang Zong-tang  ^ f£  /j?  Yip, Dong, Ye, Ding, Ceng Jang  Oylin Society  Ai-lian Gong-suo  ^  jyfj  Eng, Chew, Wu, Cai, Zhou Chao  Quon Lung Said Tong  Guan Long-Xi Tang  gj f j ^ $  Sue Yuen Tong  Su-yuan Zong-tang  ^  Wong Kong Har Tong  Huang Jiang-xia Tang ^  Wong Wun San  Huang Yun-shan Gong-^ q| M fa ^ suo  Yee Fong Toy Tong  Yu Feng-cai Tang  Lee Kwong Kai Society  L i Gang-xi Tang  4  Look Ming Reading Room  Lu-ming Bie-shu  ft  Wong from Toy-Shan  Ming Sun Reading Room  Min-xing Yue-bao She  *i %ffijftit  Wong, from Huang and Wang Hoy-Ping from Kai-Ping  Cantonese  ")^J frj-  ^  &  gg. ^ |f_  Lew, Guan, Liu, Guan, Zhang Chang,Chew Zhao  Characters j^j &j ^ * J1  Ma  Guan  Guan  Lew, Fong, Lei, Fang, Kuang Kuang Wong  Huang, Wang  Wong  Huang, Wang  Y u e  4  Mandarin (pin-yin)  '  Y  e  e  Lee from , Hoy-Ping  r  Y  u  L i from Kai-Ping Huang and Wang from Tai-Shan  .T.  m  ^  81  Rooms [Min-xing Yue-bao She] - but since the Vancouver Chinese speak mutually intelligible dialects, no segmentation i s evident with respect to language.  Instead, segmentation seems to be largely a product of  scale, or of particular historical circumstances.  As Willmott states,  "Those few cases of segmentation that do exist have their origin in the local politics of Chinatown rather than in cultural differences stemming from China" (1964: 34).  He goes on to note that the clan with the  largest representation in Vancouver - the Wongs - have two associations, neither of which correlates with a specific locality (1964: 34) nor with the difference in surname between Huang ( ^^  ) and Wang (  Jfc/  )•  9  Rather, i t appears that the Wong Kong Har Tong was established f i r s t , around the turn of the century, while the Wong Wun Sun was established around the beginning of the thirties as a response to disputes arising among Wong clan members regarding a murder incident.  In the sixties,  this dispute was largely forgotten, and the two Wong societies exhibited interlocking directorships and were complementary in nature. the two societies have since merged into one: Society ( ^  Aj  f&j *.% ^-  Today,  the Wong Sye Jong Chun  ).  Vancouver's clan associations in the sixties were predominantly patronized by China-born males who immigrated to Canada before the immigration closure in 1923,  although there were some important exceptions  to this generalization at the leadership level (see Chapter IV). Many recent immigrants to Canada, deriving from a vastly changed China, had already rejected the traditional loyalty to clan and surname and therefore were not likely to join clan associations upon their arrival. Fur-  82  thermore, membership in the clan associations was usually male.  As  Willmott stated in 1964: Although membership in clan associations is open to women of the same surname, there are very few female members. The older generation i s , of course, overwhelmingly male. Furthermore, both old and new ideas link women more effectively to the clan associations of their husbands, where they are often asked to perform the tasks of cooking and serving for banquets and celebrations (1964: 35). Thus, the clan associations reinforced the traditional subordination of women to  men. In the sixties, the clan associations provided recreational  and social activities for their members, settled minor disputes between members or between a member and a non-member, and furnished welfare programs based on earnings from real estate investments.  Some clan  associations, for instance, owned buildings in Chinatown valued at $75,000 to $100,000 or more, typically using one floor for the associations headquarters and renting out the rest (Willmott 1964:  36) . Another important  function of the clan associations was their sponsorship of traditional Chinese celebrations, such as the Chinese New Year and Qing Ming ( •0$  \^  ), a festival having to do with the remembrance of ancestors.  The  clan associations, then, were in a broad sense concerned with the preservation of traditional Chinese culture, a function that decreased their appeal for certain pro-assimilationist Chinese. These associations were organized on a similar model regardless of their size. As Willmott notes, they usually had a twentymember standing committee with a five-man executive that acted on the basis of informal consultation.  These leaders thus had a great deal of  83  informal influence within the association.  Further, there appeared to  be no formal links between clan associations in Canada and those in other countries.  Members of clan associations in Vancouver stressed  the autonomy of their organization, except in cases when their association was the national hheadquarters for Canada (Willmott 1964:  34).  Much rivalry has existed among clan associations in Vancouver. The Wong and Lee clan associations, the two biggest and most influential in the community, have traditionally formed opposing factions.  Inter-  esting in this respect is the fact that three of the four most influent i a l leaders in the 1960's were of the Wong clan, while the fourth was a Lee.  One community leader remarked in this regard that: The power of Chinatown comes out of Wong clan superiority. The other clan associations are not as powerful as the Wongs and are always fighting among themselves. The Wongs can't agree with the Lees, and the Lees can't get along with the Jungs, you see.  In terms of Chinatown politics, then, the Wong societies were foremost among the clan associations in influence.  In the field of economics and  business success, however, members of the Lee association were quite distinguished, and since wealth is very highly regarded by the Chinese community, achievement in this regard was undoubtedly a source of influence, and prestige for the Lee clan. A member of the Yee Clan related the following story concerning clan rivalry in Chinatown. contest in 1959, as finalists.  During the Vancouver Chinatown Queen  two candidates, a Miss Yee and a Miss Lee, were nominated  Everybody in Chinatown knew that Miss Lee was going to  win, because the contest was based, not on the beauty or intelligence of  84  the candidate, but on the number of tickets she could s e l l .  Miss Lee,  representing a large clan, was expected to s e l l the most tickets, while Miss Yee, coming from a small and relatively poor clan, was not expected to drum up much support.  The Yee clan association, however, appealed to  their branch associations in the U.S. and to the Mah clan association, with which they had a strong affinity. overwhelming majority of votes.  As a result,Miss Yee gained an  When the Lee's began to realize the  trend of the contest, i t was already too late for them to buy additional tickets.  Finally, in an attempt to maintain the status quo, the judges  nominated two queens on the grounds that some tickets could not be counted because of uncertainty regarding their date of purchase. This story does not deal with issues of the same import as were dealt with by clans earlier in the history of the community, but i t nevertheless illustrates some aspects of the nature of clan rivalry and solidarity i n the community of the sixties.  First, the Lee clan could  not lose, no matter what the true result of the contest.  Thus, the ten-  dency to prevent loss of face in this instance was a powerful mechanism for maintaining the status quo. Second, the story illustrates that certain clans were seen to maintain alliance based on criteria other than those of common mystical ancestorship or agnation.  The Yees and Mahs were  considered to have a special affinity for each other because of a long 10 history of inter-marriage.  Third, the story indicates that although  there are no formal relationships between clan associations in different countries, some kind of informal solidarity did exist.  Thus, one could  expect that were a Mah from Canada to travel in the U.S., he would not  85  be considered as much of a stranger to other Mali's than would a Chinese of another surname. The establishment  of the clan associations in Vancouver post-  dated that of the Chee Gung Tong and the Chinese Benevolent Society by almost two decades, probably a result of the fact that the small size of the community and the nature of the external threat to the Chinese in the 1800's f i r s t necessitated the formation of relatively inclusive societies that could represent the Chinese as a whole to the host society. As noted before, the impetus to form a community-wide association arose only after i t became apparent that the Chee Gung VTong alone was not equipped to handle the problems of representing a l l Chinese to the host i l e environment surrounding them. It was only later, as the scale of the community increased and as representational needs were cared for by the Chinese Benevolent Association, that distinctions among Chinese became as significant as those between Chinese and non-Chinese.  It was  at this time that the clan and locality associations, serving intracommunity needs, began to flourish. The clan associations as a whole, then, were not really fully developed until the second decade of the 20th century, but from this time on they played a significant role in the community.  Their  early functions included such economic responsibilities as providing capital for bankrupt businessmen, serving as employment agencies,  and  furnishing welfare benefits accrued from real estate investments.  In  addition, they settled disputes, both serious and minor, between members  86  or represented them in case of a dispute with a non-member (Willmott 1964:  36). In this early period (1920-1940), however, the clan associations  did not seem to inspire the same amount of loyality among their members as did the locality associations.  Perhaps this was due to the fact that  the bonds among members of the locality organizations were reinforced by long-time acquaintanceships that had originated in China i t s e l f .  By  the 1960's, however, the clan associations had become of greater importance than the locality associations, conceivably because they united a more heterogeneous group of people and appealed to a broader loyalty, at least in the context of overseas society.  Canadian-born Chinese, for  instance, seemed to be more willing to relate to an organization based on common surname than one based on a district with which they were unfamiliar.  The nature of these locality associations, once the backbone of  the associational structure in Vancouver, w i l l be discussed next. The Locality Associations (Hui-Guan) In Vancouver, the locality associations were very important historically but by the sixties had diminished in influence quite considerably.  This was largely a result of the fact that these associations  were extremely traditionist in ideology and oriented toward the homeland, therefore best suiting those migrants of the so-called "sojourner mentali t y " (Lee 1960) . As this' type of mentality became less pervasive and as the homeland became less v i t a l to the community as a whole, the locality associations were considered important by a smaller and smaller segment  87  of the population.  Among the members of this segment of the population  who were predominantly China-born and elderly, however, the criterion of native place significantly affected the structuring of their social relationships. There were eleven locality associations in existence in the early 1960's.  These are presented in Table HID with the names of the  districts they represented. As can be seen from Table HID, some locality associations were more inclusive than others.  The locality associations, therefore, ex-  hibited a segmentary structure among themselves.  For instance, a per-  son from the Pan-yu [Pun-yu] district in the San-Yi.[Sam-Yap] area of China had the option of belonging both to the Yue-Shan Association (representing migrants from Pan-yu) and to the Sam-Yap Association, in which he would find himself united with individuals from the Nan-Hai [Nam-Hoy] and Shun-de [Sun-dak] regions.  There was, however, no one locality asso-  ciation that represented a l l the localities from which migrants to Canada typically originated; this function was largely assumed by the Chinese Benevolent Association, whose executive board was for many years composed of representatives from a l l the locality associations (see above, page 93 ) . The significance of the locality associations historically derived from the fact that the segments on which they were based usually formed corporate, closely-knit units in which the members a l l knew each other or were genealogically related (Crissman 1967: 193-194). Crissman summarizes the importance of native place among overseas Chinese in the following words:  TABLE HID Locality Associations of the 1960's NAME OF ASSOCIATION  DISTRICT REPRESENTED Cantonese  Mandarin  Characters  English  Mandarin  Sam-Yap  San-Yi  >• &  Sam-Yap District Association  San Yi Tong Xiang Hui  Nam-Hoy  Nan-Hai  Nam-Hoy District Association  Nan Hai Hui Guan  Pun-Yu  Pan-Yu  Yue Shan Assoc.  Yu Shan Zong Gong Suo  Sun-Dak  Shun-De  Shoon Duck Assoc.  Shun De Tang  Sei-Yap  Si-Yi  Five Districts Assoc. Wu Y i Tong of Hong Kong* Xiang Hui  Toy-San  Tai-Shan  Hoy-Ping  Kai-Ping  ^  v  Yan-Ping  En-Ping  S an-Wui  Xin-Hui  Chung-Shan  Zhong-Shan  %  ^  Hoy Sun Ning Yung Benevolent Assoc.  Tai Shan Ning Y-ang/Hui Guan  Hoy Ping District Association  Kai Ping Hui Guan  \ Yin Ping District Association Kong Chow District Association BenevShontYee Benevolent Society Chung Shan Lung Jin Society  *  Characters ^  )^)  jlfsfr.  Iff*  En Ping Hui  fa  Gang Zhou Hui Guan Chong Y i Hui Zhong Shan Long Zhen Tong Xiang Hui  it >.f l».  fi\  ^  The Five Districts Association of Hong Kong represents the four districts of Sei-Yap [Si-Yi] plus one additional d i s t r i c t , Hok-San [He-Shan >#|> ^ ].  89  Every Chinese has a native place, the area of China where his localised and where his ancestors are buried and worshipped. He may never have seen i t , having been born elsewhere in China or abroad, but he knows i t as the place where his father or forefather originated. It is important to emphasize that a person's native place is permanent and cannot be changed. It is ascribed or inherited like a name or lineage membership, and in foreign context one of the most important things about a Chinese is his native place in China. (1967: 190). As one member of the Vancouver Chinese community stated: The locality here was more important than the clan because relatively speaking there was more relation to the locality, especially among the older Chinese. They knew each other, gave news to each other, and discussed the old places. It is no wonder, then, that one of the most famous Chinese associations in North America - the Six Companies of San Francisco - was in actuality a confederation of locality associations.  That the leaders of this i n s t i -  tution succeeded in exercising effective criminal jurisdiction over their members, in controlling the influx of migrants, and i n securing repayment of advances made to coolies and labourers, gives some indication of the strength these associations attained among overseas Chinese there (Campbell 1923: 30). The f i r s t reference to a locality association operative among the B.C. Chinese was in regard^to the Ning Yung Hing Tong [Ning-yang Xing11 Tang],  established in Victoria in order to provide mutual aid for  fellow-countrymen.  Its early functions consisted of arranging for trips  back to the homeland, supervising the return of bones to China for interment, settling disputes and collecting debts for members, and maintaining hostel f a c i l i t i e s  for transients (Willmott 1970b: 46).  90  By the turn of the century, eleven locality organizations were active in Vancouver.  One of their more important tasks was to collect  the bones of deceased Chinese and send them back to China.  This was  done periodically as a collective endeavor, each time costing over $10,000. The funds were raised in part by the collection of an exit fee (chu kou piao) of $2.00 whenever a member lefththe country for any period of time. Furthermore, these associations remitted large sums of money to their homeland villages:iand districts in times of disaster or great need. Some even funded the building of schools or other institutions in China. As time went on, i t became more and more d i f f i c u l t to return the bones to China, and 1937 is cited as the last date that a shipment of bones was successfully returned to China by the locality associations. One.member of the Vancouver Chinese community stated that around this time 2,000 bones were held up in Victoria, until a suggestion was f i nally made to bury them there.  After this, the main functions of the  locality associations centered around welfare, especially for the aged members. Many of the locality associations owned their own buildings, renting them out for income, and some of them supervised or maintained hostel f a c i l i t i e s for elderly men or seasonal labourers.  The inhabitants  of these hostels, or fang-kou, were one of the many groups in Chinatown threatened by the redevelopment plans of the sixties. Thus, the locality associations were among the most traditionist in the community by the 1960's. One of these organizations, however, had gained a reputation as an important welfare organization within the )  community.  As one member of this association said:  91  Shon Yee is a true benevolent association and is recognized as such by the Canadian government. We contribute to many Canadian charities and have a death benefit of $400 for members. The others are not up to the same standard; they only take care of their own members. This organization, however, was somewhat atypical. The other district associations followed the more traditional practices of providing welfare benefits only for their own members. As a whole, then, the influent i a l ! ty of these associations diminished as the sixties progressed. Community Associations:  The Chinese Benevolent Association  The Chinese Benevolent Association (C.B.A.) was the only association in Vancouver in the sixties that attempted to represent the Chinese community as a whole.  Although not a l l Chinese recognized i t s  right to speak for them, the C.B.A. nevertheless held a privileged position in the community by virtue of the fact that i t transcended many of the factions in the community and that, as a federation of associations, it theoretically represented the totality of an otherwise segmented structure.  It also derived singularity from the fact that i t traditionally  acted as an intermediary between the Canadian p o l i t i c a l system and the Chinese.  In the early history of the community, in fact, the provincial  government tacitly delegated control to the C.B.A., and up until the establishment of a Chinese consulate in Vancouver in 1909,  the C.B.A. was  recognized as the sole Chinese representative to the Canadian government. The functions of the C.B.A. in the sixties were diverse in nature; for instance, i t simultaneously acted as.a welfare agency, appeal system, publicity bureau, and charitable institution.  It was furthermore,  the "highest commission of reconciliation" within the community itself  92  (Willmott 1970b: 148), and Vancouver was the headquarters of this association nationally. The C.B.A. was f i r s t established in Victoria in 1884 as the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, in response to a need for an association that could represent the Chinese on a community-wide basis (see C.Y. Lai 1972) . From a translation of Inside the Chinese Benevolent Association we learn that a suggestion to set up a C.B.A. in Vancouver was f i r s t made in 1889 and that i t was established shortly thereafter.  From i t s inception, the C.B.A. held a singular position in  the network of associations.  It was instrumental in presenting a common  front to the outside in times of crisis and discrimination as well as caring for the needy and adjudicating disputes internally. In 1907 the C.B.A. founded the Chinese Public Hospital. At f i r s t located on the f i r s t two floors of the C.B.A. building, the hospital was later transferred to a wing of Mount St. Joseph's.  The hospital  operated on a charitable basis according to need, and in 1943 the Chinese community donated over $30,000 to improve i t .  During this early  period, the C.B.A. also established a Chinese-language school on i t s premises, one which was to play an important function when racial discrimination prevailed i n the public school systems.  Throughout the early  decades of the 20th Century, the C.B.A. was instrumental in protesting the ever-increasing head tax to the government.  Perhaps to facilitate  external recognition, i t registered with the Canadian government as a charitable institution in 1907, 1923,  and when the Exclusion Act was passed in  the C.B.A. proclaimed July 1st as "Humiliation Day", 12 Chinese to protest this legislation annually.  urging a l l  93  The internal structure of the C.B.A. has varied with i t s multiple and changing statuses within the community. When the C.B.A. was f i r s t established, i t was the unchallenged representative of the Vancouver Chinese; however, as time progressed and o f f i c i a l representation became more accessible to the Chinese, the predominance of the C.B.A. came to be questioned.-  In response to this trend, efforts were  made to make the association more inclusive through greater representaiton on i t s executive.  The history of the structuring and restruc-  turing of this executive, then, sheds light on the role of the C.B.A. during different stages of the community's development. When the C.B.A. was f i r s t organized in Victoria, the association was controlled and directed by a few wealthy merchants who were the undisputed leaders of the community (Sedgwick 1973: 70).  Although we have  no direct evidence for Vancouver, the situation during the f i r s t few decades of the C.B.A.'s existence was probably much the' same. In 1918, however, with the base of merchant leadership somewhat declining and with the role of the C.B.A. challenged by the Consulate, the executive was broadened to that of a board consisting of a representative from each of the locality associations. Because the locality associations, being such corporate and closely, knit groups, played such an important role in the community until the end of the Exclusion Act, this system sufficed with few changes as late as the 1960's. At this time, the structure of the executive was again altered due to the fact that representation of the basis of locality associations was no longer an accurate reflection of the real loci of power within the community.  In 1962,  94  therefore, an attempt to revitalize the C.B.A. by adopting a new constitution and incorporating a council of representatives from the majority of associations then in existence was made. In spite of these efforts, the C.B.A. in the sixties continued to be largely identified with the traditionist sector of the community. The modernist Elks and Vets, for instance, were not invited to send representatives to the newly formed C.B.A. council. This was a foreseeable development, however, because changes in the structure of the community itself and in i t s relation to the wider Canadian society precluded the possibility that the C.B.A. play as preeminent a role i n the community as i t had previously.  By the time that the revitalization efforts took  place, i t was clear to even the most solid C.B.A. supporters that the C.B.A. was losing i t s appeal to youth and that many Chinese no longer recognized its right to represent them. It also became apparent that while whites regarded the C.B.A. as representative of a l l Chinese, the Chinese themselves regarded i t as representative of only certain factions within the community, particularly the Kuomintang.  As one leader of the community stated,  The C.B.A. i s the Chinese spokesman. It i s the symbol of unity. We use the C.B.A. to give such an impression to the Canadian government, although we know ourselves that not a l l support i t . By the 1960's, then, the Chinese Benevolent Association s t i l l assumed certain important functions for certain segments of the Chinese population, but its base of support was not as great as in former times.  95  Other Associations:  Athletic, Commercial,Charitable, Leisure and Alumni  The other associations played a less important role in a political sense than the ones described above. Nonetheless, they were important in that they contributed to the richness and diversity of the associational network, a factor that distinguishes the Vancouver Chinese community from others, in Southeast Asia and elsewhere.  I w i l l briefly  describe the salient characteristics of each of these types of associations . Commercial:  One would expect that commercial associations would  have occupied a prominent position in the associational network, but for reasons not entirely clear commercial associations have not played a very significant role in Vancouver's Chinese community.  Perhaps in the  1960's this was due to the fact that commercial interests were represented in the p o l i t i c a l system in other more indirect ways. Whatever the reasons, commercial associations have exhibited a history of ineffective and sporadic existence. Of a l l the commercial associations, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce had the most enduring influence, although i t , too, was during certain periods of the community's history.  inoperative  This association was  founded in 1910 as the United Chinese Chamber of Commerce in order to protect the interests of merchants and businessmen.  It attempted to  facilitate the exchange of information with other Chambers of Commerce in Shanghai, Hankow, Hong Kong and San Francisco and to combat unfair treatment of Chinatown merchants by the white population.  The association  96  was most powerful at a time when merchant control of the community was 13 s t i l l operative.  In the 1960's, certain influential community lea-  ders attempted to revive this association, but their efforts werennot very successful. Other commercial associations in the 1960's included the Vancouver Chinese Restaurant Association, the Chinese Trade Workers' Association (a right wing organization affiliated with the Kuomintang), and the B.C. Lower Mainland Cooperative Association.  This latter asso-  ciation was established in the early sixties as the Chinese Farmers' Association ( --ip" /^yp^, J=J£- ^  )» later changing i t s name to the  B.C.  Lower Mainland Farmers' Cooperative Association when i t accepted a few non-Chinese members.  In the sixties, this organization was concerned  with raising the standard of living of Chinese farmers and investigating farming methods and conditions in the B.C. Lower Mainland Area. 1967,  In  i t represented more than 100 farms. In addition to these, certain associations were formed on a  temporary basis to promote the redevelopment of Chinatown.  These were  the Chinatown Development Association and the Strathcona Property Owners and Tenants Association. Athletic:  During the early sixties, at least seven Chinese  associations based on athletics were in existence.  Some of these - such  as the All-Chinese Basketball League and the Chinese Golf Club - were important in that they provided a social context within which influential Chinese leaders were able to meet. Others were affiliated with larger associations.  The Hon Hsing Athletic Glub and the Masonic Athletic Club,  97  for instance, were related to the Wong clan association and the Freemasons, respectively.  The Hon Hsing Club was established in 1940.  In the six-  ties, i t sponsored weekly folk dances, Cantonese music, and an annual Lion's Dance in addition to various athletic activities.  The Hai Fung  Association was established later, around the mid-fifties, but i t quickly gained prominence by virtue of the popularity of its r,table-tennis and chess tournaments.  The majority of i t s members were in the twenty-five  to thirty-year-old age bracket, although members of a l l ages and occupations were represented (personal communication). Charitable and Leisure:  Among the charitable associations were  the Charlie Kent Golden Anniversary Charity Foundation, established by one of the wealthiest Chinese in Vancouver,and Chinese branches of the Red Cross and Community Chest.  Each year, these latter associations would  ask influential leaders of the community to head "teams" of canvassers and were quite successful in raising welfare donations because of their support. The leisure organizations of the sixties f e l l into the following groups:  youth, recreational, and musical.  The last were generally  traditionist in orientation and were concerned with keeping alive the old instruments and ancient, music of China.  The Gin Wah Sing Society  [Zhen-hua Sheng Yin-yue She] was founded in 1934 and sponsored an annual performance of a Cantonese opera.  For the most part, however, the social  clubs consisted of recreational youth organizations.  The Chung Wah Cubs  and Scouts and the Chung Wah Youth League were both clubs for children, the last of which provided scout activities as well as a band that par-  98  ticipated in parades.  The Chinese Varsity Club and the Overseas Chinese  Students association were organizations for university students.  The  Chinese Youth Association was not limited to students but was open to a l l youth.  It deserves particular mention in that i t was the only  association in Vancouver in the sixties to voice pro-People's Republic of China sentiments.  The members of the association published a small  newspaper, showed movies from the People's Republic, and versed themselves in the revolutionary theatre that was;«an integral part of mainland Chinese p o l i t i c a l and cultural l i f e . Alumni:  The four alumni organizations in existence in the  sixties were based on graduation from the same school in China.  As  noted above (Chapter I ) , the formation of associations on the basis of common graduation from the same school was not an innovation for overseas Chinese but stemmed from their homeland. In Vancouver, graduation from the same middle school (about equivalent to our high-school) as well as from the same university was significant.  These associations  were similar to the locality associations in that they were oriented toward the homeland and were generally traditionist in nature. The Network of Associations in the Early 1960's The network of associations under consideration is not a formal structure but indicates informal loci of power in the Vancouver Chinese community that results from the interlocking of directorships among associations.  Skinner has analyzed the structure of power in the Chinese  community of Bangkok by means of interlocking directorships, and his words on their significance are best presented verbatim:  99  The Chinese associations, unlike the agencies of a real government, are not arranged in a formal hierarchy with specified lines of control. To be sure, the superordinate position of the Chamber of Commerce is generally recognized [in Vancouver the Chinese Benevolent Association]....But the Chamber's supremacy is based only on the "charter" of tradition, and acting alone i t has no power to dictate policy or issue orders to other associations. On the basis of formal or written charter, the Chinese associations are independent and unaffiliated; the only exceptions are provided by the schools subordinate to speech-group associations....In the absence of a formal organization hierarchy and of formal lines of authority among the Chinese associations, the functional importance of interlocking directorships is obvious. They are the main channels of communication and influence uniting the various organizations. It. is largely because of them that groups of Chinese associations can co-ordinate policy and exercise unified control (1958: 200). Unfortunately, the data collected on associations in Vancouver are far less complete than those that Skinner collected and for the Bangkok Chinese community.  analyzed  In particular, no information con-  cerning the executives of Vancouver Chinese business corporations has been collected, an aspect that Skinner considered essential to his analysis.  In spite of these shortcomings, I have used the data available on  the Vancouver Chinese community to map out a network of associations as i t existed in the early 1960's. Although based on incomplete data, i t does illustrate some important points about the nature of power in the Vancouver community that have been confirmed by other Figure  observations.  I indicates, then, that interlocking directorships  created four main l o c i of power within the associational structure. These are:  the Chinese Benevolent Association [Zhong-hua Hui-guan], the  Freemasons [Zhi-gong Tang], the Kuomintang [Guo-min Dang], and the Wong Kong Har Tong [Huang Jiang-xia Tang].  Of a l l the associations, the C.B.A.  100  101  interlocked with the most number of associations and is therefore placed in the center of the diagram.  The Freemasons and K.M.T., being antagon-  i s t i c toward each other, had no interlocking directorships themselves, but each interlocked with the executive board of the C.B.A. The C.B.A., in fact, was at this time attempting to maintain a careful balance between conflicting Freemason and K.M.T. spheres of influence.  Its three  co-chairman, for instance, included by design one representative from the Freemasons, one from the Kuomintang, and one who was "neutral" with respect to this conflict.  From the point of view of p o l i t i c a l efficacy,  i t was crucial for the C.B.A. to maintain this "neutralist" position, for the more i t leaned toward one side or the other, the more i t weakened its position as an effective mediator within the community - a quality that largely determined the extent of i t s power. The structure of interlocking directorships indicates that the basic factional alignment of the associations in the sixties falls into three broad groups:  the Kuomintang, the "neutralist", and the Free-  mason spheres of influence.  If Figure  I is viewed from the perspective  of these factions, i t can be seen that a l l the associations in the middle sector of the diagram f a l l into the neutralist category.  The Wong Kong  Har Tong and i t s a f f i l i a t e s , then, played an important role as neutralist organizations in that they served to mitigate the Kuomintang/Freemason conflict by including representatives from both of these associations on their executive boards. It is also of interest that the Kuomintang bloc exhibited shared directorships with the more traditionist clan, locality, and music  102  societies, while the Freemason bloc was based on links with the more modernist associations such as the Vets, societies.  Elks, and Shon Yee [Chong-Yi Hui]  Thus, the Kuomintang sphere included a much greater proportion  of traditionist associations than did the Freemason sphere. Also important in this respect is the fact that the Kuomintang bloc maintained more links with the neutralist (or C.B.A.) sector than did the Freemason bloc, this being only one indication of the closer relationship that the C.B.A. held with the K.M.T. in spite of i t s efforts toward neutrality. As noted above, these four power foci were determined by an analysis of interlocking directorships among the associations.  Another  indication of the relative influence of the associations was gained from interview data on forty-nine associational leaders within the community. These leaders were asked to name the five associations they thought to be most influential.  Some leaders nominated less than five associations,  but each time an association was nominated, i t was given one'Vote".  The  associations nominated were then ranked according to number of "votes" received, every association receiving more than one vote being included in Table  HIE. TABLE HIE Relative Influence of the Associations  Association Chinese Benevolent Association Freemasons Kuomintang Wong Clan Association Lee Clan Association Lions Vets Elks Hoy San Locality Association  Number of Votes 29 21 16 14 10 10 5 2 2  103  These d a t a i n d i c a t e t h a t the a s s o c i a t i o n s t h a t formed t h e f o c i of the f o u r power b l o c s  i s o l a t e d by means o f i n t e r l o c k i n g d i r e c t o r s h i p s  were a l s o thought t o be most i n f l u e n t i a l by these community Table H I E also points  to the f a c t t h a t t h e Kuomintang a s s o c i a t i o n was  thought t o be l e s s i n f l u e n t i a l by these l e a d e r s g a n i z a t i o n , an o p i n i o n  leaders.  than the Freemason o r -  t h a t was expressed by other members o f t h e com-  munity as w e l l . I n l i g h t o f the changing r e l a t i o n s h i p s among the a s s o c i a t i o n s and  o f the changing degree o f i n f l u e n c e t h a t s p e c i f i c a s s o c i a t i o n s  exer-  c i s e d i n the community, then, i t i s t o be expected t h a t the a s s o c i a t i o n a l network o f t h e s e v e n t i e s would l o o k q u i t e d i f f e r e n t from that o f the s i x t i e s .  Indeed, i t i s n o t p o s s i b l e t o p r e d i c t from the d a t a  l e c t e d f o r the s i x t i e s what form the network o f the s e v e n t i e s and  future research  parative material.  i n t h i s area might p r o v i d e  col-  assumed,  some i n t e r e s t i n g com-  The next t o p i c o f d i s c u s s i o n i s the type o f men who  formed the l i n k s among these a s s o c i a t i o n s .  104  FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER III 1.  By commercial I do not refer to actual corporations or companies, but to associations formed with respect to commercial interests. The analysis of the political structure of the Vancouver Chinese presented here is partial because, due to lack of data on the subject, i t does not consider the role of corporations and corporate executive boards in the p o l i t i c a l system.  2.  This opinion was voiced by a member of the Chinese community who was not a part of the leadership structure of the 19601s. Quite a few of the Chinese leaders interviewed, however, also indicated a relationship between the Freemason's p o l i t i c a l influence and their success in real estate.  3.  Actually, the Freemasons were known to have supported the Liberal Party in the late f i f t i e s and early sixties, much to the dismay of some members who felt that the organization should remain apolitical.  4.  It is of interest that secret societies were often the f i r s t associations to be established by the Chinese in Southeast Asia as well. See Blythe, The Impact of Chinese Secret Societies in Malaya, for a description of early Chinese secret societies in Java, Singapore, Malacca, and Penang (1969: 45-62) and Freedman (1967) for an analysis of the significance of the secret society in Singapore's early history.  5.  Based on an interview with Seto Ying-shek (see Footnote 1, Chapter I ) .  6.  This conflict, however, was subdued during the f i r s t years of the Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945), when a l l factions came together to support the Nationalist government in Chungking against the Japanese invastion. By the time of the c i v i l war in China (1946-1949), the split between the Freemasons and the Kuomintang once again became complete.  7.  The Chinese Benevolent Association was apparently dominated by the Kuomintang until at least the early 1940's, at which time i t s leaders attempted to make i t more of a non-partisan organization.  8.  Table IIIC is amended from that appearing in Willmott's (1964) article on Vancouver's clan associations in that i t includes one association that was omitted from his table and in that i t presents the names of the associations as they are known in the community (that i s , either in English or in various Cantonese romanizations), as well as in their Mandarin transcriptions.  9.  This •romanization is in Mandarin. Both of these characters ( •% and ( ) are pronounced Wong in Cantonese.  )  105  10.  Freedman notes essentially the same phenomenon occurring among l i n eages in Southeastern China. As he states, "...lineages might be grouped not only by similarity of surname but also on the basis of certain traditional alliances between surnames....We thus find a situation in which any localized lineage at a given point in time might be grouped in alliance with certain lineages and in hostility against others. Alliance might be based upon agnation, linked surnames, or connubium...." (1958: 5).  11.  The name of this association was later changed to Hoy Sun Ning Yung [Tai-shan Ning-yang]. Hoy-Sun is the local pronunciation of Taishan ( ^ j-b ) .  12.  The factual information in this paragraph was obtained from Inside the Chinese Benevolent Association, an association periodical translated by Jennie and Bessie Yu.  13.  From the series of interviews with Seto Ying-shek.  106  CHAPTER IV LEADERS AND LEADERSHIP IN THE CHINESE COMMUNITY OF VANCOUVER  This chapter views the social characteristics and patterns of leadership among the key community leaders of the Vancouver Chinese community.  The general context within which this is done is to view  leadership in Vancouver as a variant of a genre of overseas Chinese leadership that exists to one extent or another in a l l overseas Chinese communities.  Also central to this approach, however, is the question of  how, within this broad type of leadership, the specificities of the Canadian situation demanded innovation and adaptation.  To this end, I examine  the effect of such variables as i) the nature of Chinese migration to Canada; i i ) the size and growth of the community; and i i i ) the nature of the relationship between the Chinese, community and the wider Canadian society on the kind of leadership that emerged. The Historical Emergence of Chinese Leadership in Vancouver The significance of the findings to be presented on the structure of leadership in the Vancouver Chinese community of the 1960's are better understood within a historical context, for Chinese leadership can be seen to have evolved from a situation in which merchant status and wealth were the only bases of leader-elite status to one in which the social characteristics of the leaders are more varied and more than one type of leader is recognized.  The early leaders as well as those of  the 1960's operated within a network of associations, although the network i t s e l f has become progressively diversified.  It seems f r u i t f u l ,  107  therefore, to examine the kind of leadership that existed in the early community and to assess what directions this leadership has taken. Although the history of the Chinese community in Victoria is outside the scope of this paper, the nature of Chinese leadership in the early years of that community (1880-1900) is nevertheless relevant to an understanding of the development of a leadership elite in Vancouver.  We  know, for instance, that merchants were almost the sole spokesmen for the Victoria Chinese community and that they occupied the executive positions of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association and of other associations.  We also know that they were engaged in flourishing trade,  often acted as bankers for their customers, had contacts with other merchants as far away as the United States and China, and that they drew fairly rigid status distinctions between themselves and Chinese of the service and labouring classes (Sedgwick 1973: 47).  Although as yet undocu-  mented, i t is altogether likely that similar merchants were the main source of leadership within the Vancouver Chinese community during this period. For a slightly later period, around the turn of the century, we have indications that the prominent role of merchants in the leadership structure continued.  The 1902 Royal Commission, for instance, re-  ported that merchants "exercise a strong influence over the immigrants of the labouring classes and largely control the numbers coming into the country" (Wai 1970: 52).  In addition, Sedgwick reports that:  The merchants of this period are s t i l l vividly remembered by older members of the Chinese community today. They are referred to not only in terms that allude to their higher status economically, socially, and politically, but also as leaders that fully represented their community in a way which is unknown today (1973: 96) .  108  These merchants f u l f i l l e d most of the important associational positions; however, they were not usually elected, but appointed by the C.B.A. With the advent of exclusion i n 1923 the base of leadership begins to broaden.  Sedgwick, for instance, notes a decline in the power  of the traditional Chinatown merchants of Victoria, and in 1924 he notes that the K.M.T. executive is almost devoid of merchant control (1973: 150-151).  Furthermore, in 1916, the Chinese Times reported that some  groups in Vancouver were pressing for a restructuring of the C T B J A . executive.  In 1918, after i n i t i a l l y vetoing any change, the election system  was changed from one in which a few wealthy merchants constituted the executive to one in which a representative from each of the locality associations was to be nominated to form an executive board (see Chapter III).  Perhaps this was a means of wresting power out of the hands  of a few people who had controlled the C.B.A. for a long period of time. Whatever the reason, the f i r s t election was threatened by trouble from groups opposed to wider representation, and police were hired to prevent i t (Chinese Times 8/7/1918). This controversy over the constitution of the C.B.A. executive seems to indicate that by the end of this period some groups were questioning the basis of merchant leadership.  The community was beginning  to accept other criteria in addition to wealth as significant in leadership. sen,  Leadership based on political grounds, such as support of Sun Yat-  was undoubtedly instrumental in this change, as was the fact that  a l l Chinese were no longer engaged in commerce by the 1930's.  By the  end of the period of exclusion, then, merchant status was no longer the  109  sole criterion for community leadership.  The 1940's mark the beginning  of Foon Sein's career, one of a new type of leader in Vancouver's Chinatown whose prestige was based more on community service than on financial standing. I have attempted to demonstrate that by the 1960's, the structure of leadership had become considerably more diversified than in the early stages of the community.  Different types of leaders came into exis-  tence who reflected the major groupings within the community.  Although  there was s t i l l a certain amount of overlap, p o l i t i c a l leadership had become distinct from mercantile leadership, and the diverse nature of the associatonal network made i t impossible for one leader to form the apex of a single hierarchical structure. N-afcuEeeof the Data on Leaders of the 1960's Most of the data for this analysis were collected in 1965 1966, some additional research being completed as late as 1969. study for which the original data was collected (Erickson 1966)  and  The differs  from this one both in scope and general direction and is primarily concerned with using the Chinese case to further elaborate and validate specific techniques and theories for the study of community power. The data therefore impose certain constraints on the type of analysis that can be carried out.  In spite of these limitations, however, much valuable material  was collected, not a l l of which was relevant to the purposes of the original study.  This study therefore makes wider use of the data collected  and views i t from a different perspective.  110  "Leader" 'was operationally defined for the purposes of the o r i ginal study as any Chinese who held at least one executive position in a Chinese association and who was mentioned at least twice in the Chinatown News from 1961 to 1965, and this definition is conformed to here. The total population of this category was found to consist of 152 individuals. Files were kept on these individuals in which items of interest from the Chinatown News and other public sources were recorded.  Specifically,  items such as banquets attended, election to association offices, overseas trips, and meetings with prominent men were kept in chronological order in each f i l e . In addition, forty-nine of the 152 leaders were interviewed. Since the interview schedule was designed in order to test certain hypotheses which are only of peripheral interest to this study, i t contained some items which were of l i t t l e or no use here.  Such questions, however,  as respondent's age, place of birth, period of immigration, proportion of friends and business contacts who were Chinese proved to be significant, and respondents' nominations for the most influential leaders and associations contained in the interviews form the basis of much of the following analysis. The sample was not collected in a s t r i c t l y random fashion and therefore cannot be used for predictive purposes.  As nearly as I can  reconstruct i t , the biases of the sample consist of over-representation in the areas of:  i) second-generationaleaders, due to a slight second-  generation slant in the Chinatown News; i i ) respondents belonging to "high-level" associations and to what I term the "leadership elite"; and  Ill  i i i ) leaders with adequate f a c i l i t y in English, due to greater ease i n interviewing and greater accessibility.  Although the original study  states that "the research procedure was to gather comparable data from a generally representative, though not random, selection of association officers" (Erickson 1966: 47), the biases of the sample must be taken into account.  Because the extent of effect of the over-representation  is not great, however, the sample retains some u t i l i t y . A thorough analysis of the leadership structure among the Vancouver Chinese should include examination of the following aspects: i) the internal structure of leadership - the relation of leaders to each other, their social characteristics, composition of leader elites andlhierarchies, business and kinship ties, and methods of recruitment; i i ) the relation of Vancouver Chinese leaders to the Canadian government - the nature of unofficial representation, the dichotomy between external and internal types of leadership, the role and function of mediators in the community; and i i i ) the nature of the linkage of Chinese leaders in Vancouver to China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, and to other overseassChinese communities - the extent of contact, the structural similarities between Vancouver Chinese leadership and Chinese leadership elsewhere, and, finally, differences in the subjective components of leadership ideology. The data, however, are unfortunately too limited to merit such an extensive analysis.  Therefore, the areas in which the data are suf-  ficient - predominantly those dealing with the internal structure of leadership and the nature of representation to the outside community w i l l be the central topics of discussion, while the areas in which the  112  data are limited - those dealing with kinship and business ties among the leaders, and the specific ties they maintain with other Chinese community leaders - w i l l be treated only superficially. Interesting trends and relationships are noted, although the inadequacy of the data available often renders these speculative in nature. G-ivenn the nature of the data, the analysis was organized around two conceptual divisions:  i) an analysis of the leadership sample, forty-  nine men who were derived from a universe of 152 leaders and who are in a limited way representative of this universe; and i i ) an analysis of the leadership "elite", which comprises only the more influential leaders in the community (see Chapter V).  The aim of the f i r s t section (Chapter IV}  is to explore the social characteristics of the^general category "leader" as defined above and to examine in what respects this category is analytically distinct from the general propulation, while the second aims to explore the different types of elites and hierarchies operative within the leadership elite category, the social characteristics of the most influential leaders, and the ideological bases of this influentiality (Chapter V). The Social Characteristics of Forty-Nine Chinatown Leaders In this section I deal with the social characteristics of fortynine Chinatown leaders:  the major divisions, extent of assimilation, and  associational affiliations among these leaders as well as their place of birth, age, generation, family situation, educational levels and occupations.  Where possible, I attempt to assess the extent to which this group  differs from the general population and from the leadership elite.  113  Age and Sex A l l of the leaders i n the sample were male.  The only instance  of a woman being active in a leadership capacity was within a husbandand-wife team where the wife derived almost a l l her p o l i t i c a l influence from her husband.  More than one interview respondent spontaneously re-  marked that this husband-and-wife team was an unusual phenomenon in the Chinese community. Leadership was almost exclusively a male domain, and when women participated in this structure at a l l , i t was almost always in a subordinate fashion. The age of the leaders can be broken down into the following categories: TABLE IVA Age of Forty-Nine Chinatown Leaders Age  Number  71+ 64-70 59-63 52-58 45-51 38-44 31-37 24-30  3 3 2 7 9 14 5 _2  Total  45  Not Known  4  Table IVA indicates not only that there was a concentration of leaders in the middle-aged strata but also that a l l age groups among the fortynine leaders interviewed were represented.  The role of age in traditional  114  Chinese society was an important aspect of social organization (see Levy 1968: 63-140), and there is some indication that i t also forms a basis of prestige and respect in the Vancouver Chinese community.  One leader,  however, suggested that age "counted for more" in the traditionist organizations and was less important in the more recently formed, modernist groups.  Another leader, himself second-generation and fairly young, i n -  dicated that there was a "fundamental s p l i t " in leadership, opinion, and loyalty between the young and the old.  Although i t is no doubt true that  differences between young and old created a dichotomy both within the population at large and within the leadership structure, the situation was further complicated by other factors. The importance of the variable of age in leadership was often superceded by that of generation, period of immigration, and place of birth, and newly arrived immigrants were often as "traditional" in their orientation as the oldest members of the community.  The importance of age in leadership, therefore, must be  viewed in a fairly wide perspective. Place of Birth The significance of age in the leadership structure is complicated by the variables of place of birth and period of immigration.  The  importance of place of birth among the general population has been commented on before, and three categories based on place of birth and period of immigration were delineated:  i) the China-born who immigrated before  1924; i i ) the Canadian-born, or tu-sheng, group; and i i i ) the China-born who have immigrated since 1947.  In addition, the period under discussion  115  f i r s t witnesses the arrival of a new type of Chinese migrant to Canada: the unsponsored, more highly skilled immigrant from modern, urban contexts such as Hong Kong (see V. Lai 1971).  However, the impact of this  type of migrant on the social organization of the community was not really felt until the beginning of the 1970's. Among the forty-nine leaders interviewed, place of birth and period of immigration were important considerations.  Many respondents in  discussing leadership remarked that a certain leader "was popular with the second generation" or that so-and-so was recognized as a leader only among the older, China-born members of the community.  Furthermore, when  nominations for the most influential leaders were analyzed (see Chapter V, The Leadership E l i t e ) , i t became apparent that certain of these leaders derived almost a l l of their "votes" from either China-born or from Canadian-born respondents.  Some leaders, however, were nominated by both  groups equally. The relative influence of associations was analyzed in much the same manner.  Some associations were disproportionately nominated as  most influential by either second-generation leaders or by China-born leaders.  In particular, over 80% of the people who nominated the Kuomin-  tang association as influential were China-born, and 68% of the people who nominated the fraternal associations (the Lions, Elks, and Vets) were Canadian-born. Twenty-five of the forty-nine leaders interviewed were born in Canada or the U.S., twenty-three in China, and one in Bangkok. Even taking into account a moderate bias toward second-generation leaders in  116  the sample, participation in the leadership structure on the part of Canadian-born was high, inasmuch as i t i s these individuals who typically were considered least interested in assuming leadership positions in Chinatown.  On the basis of information gathered from a variety of  sources, i t i s estimated that the proportion of Canadian-born leaders in the leadership structure as a whole was about equivalent to the proportion of Canadian-born Chinese in the population at large.  Wai (1970) ,  for instance, estimates that about 39% of the Chinese population in 1961 was Canadian-born.  No estimate of the proportion of Canadian-born to  the general population exists for 1966, but i t can be assumed that this proportion either remained constant or declined in number at this time due to the increasingly liberal immigration legislation of 1962 and 1965 that caused an influx of Chinese immigrants into Canada. Many informants commented that leadership in the 1960's seemed to consist of a l i t t l e over one-half China-born. The following table indicates the birth-place of those leaders born in China: TABLE IVB Place of Birth of China-born Leaders Kwangtung (unspecified) Tai-Shan [Toy-san] Kai-Ping, En-Ping, and Xin-Hui [Hoy-ping, Yan-ping, and San-wui] Hong Kong China excluding Southeast China: Shanghai 1 Hangchow 1 Szechuan 1 Born elsewhere than China or Unknown  10 5 3 2 3 26^  Total  49  117  Seven of these men had immigrated before the immigration closure in 1923, two during the closure i t s e l f , and 14 after the liberalization of the immigration laws in 1947.  ;  Three had arrived as re_cejvtly_as_the—1-9-60's . (  These data, limited as they are, seem to indicate that the same divisions that underlie the community as a whole were also significant in the structure of leadership.  Each category - Canadian-born, China-  born early immigrated, and China-born late immigrated - had i t s representatives in the leadership structure, although the type of leadership they exercised and their ultimate functions as leaders often differed. These differences w i l l be discussed with reference to leadership elites. The data also indicate that in spite of the differing needs of these three groups, the associational network held certain attractions for each of them. Family Situation a.  Place of Origin of Family.  The forty-nine leaders inter-  viewed were asked to name the area in China from where their families had come. Crissman (1967) has noted the importance of native place in the social organization of overseas Chinese communities (see below, page 89 ), and Vancouver is no exception to this rule. Even second- and third-generation Chinese were familiar with the xian, or county, from which their families had originated.  Unfortunately, the interview did  not specifically demand name of xian, so whetehr county (xian) or province (sheng) was named was left up to the respondent. families came from the following areas in China:  The leaders'  118  TABLE IVC Place of Origin of Leaders' Families Kwangtung (unspecified) Tai-Shan [Toy-san] Other Si-Yi [Sei-yap] Zhong-Shan [Chung-san] Southeast China excluding Kwangtung China, excluding Southeast China Other (Bangkok)  23 11 6 5 0 3 _1  Total  49  It can be seen from this distribution that a l l but four of the leaders' families came from the province of Kwangtung and that almost a l l of them originated from a tiny area adjacent to Kwangchow.  These findings  are consistent with those found for the community at large, and their significance lies in the fact that xian and district provided the basis for segmentation within the community.  Unlike other overseas Chinese  communities, however, segmentation on the basis of speech group did not occur due to the fact that Cantonese was the native language of almost a l l the areas from which the migrants originate.  The leadership struc-  ture, then, like the community at large, was not segmented on the basis of language. b.  Marriage.  Of the forty-nine informatns, forty-three were  married, two widowed, and four single.  Among these four never-marrieds,  however, two were engaged at the time the data was collected, and three have actually married between then and the present time.  There seemed  to be a high valuation of marriage on the part of the leaders that was also reflected in the community as a whole and in China i t s e l f .  Consider-  119  ing the group of (forty-six) married men, the Canadian-born group showed a greater tendency toward endogamy (marriage to other Canadian-born Chinese women) than did the China-born group.  Only one China-born male,  however, was married to a non-Chinese, while three Canadian-born men were married to non-Chinese, one of whom was married to a Japanese woman and belonged to several Japanese associations in addition to Chinese ones. TABLE IVD Place of Birth and Ethnicity of Wife China-born Wife Canadian-born Males China-born Males Total  Canadian-born Chinese Wife  Non-Chinese Wife  15 9  11  1  13  26  4  Of the leaders married to Chinese women, amost a l l , with one or two exceptions, had married a woman of a different surname. One leader remarked with regard to marriage within the clan that, "It's frowned upon, but i t is done - and the people forget about i t . "  Among the leaders  interviewed, however, clan exogamy seemed to be practiced almost consistently . c. Number of Relatives in Canada.  This was considered a sig-  nificant variable in light of the importance of kinship and lineage in traditional China. Migration overseas has usually precluded the development of lineage in any extensive sense, and in spite of the fact that the role  120  of kinship among overseas Chinese has been investigated in some contexts (for instance Freedman 1957), further research is needed in this area. While the data collected on kinship among the Vancouver Chinese are extremely limited, i t can at least be said that lineage development was impossible due to the nature of Chinese migration to Canada. Although many respondents refused to name the number of their relatives in Canada due to the sensitivity of the question of i l l e g a l immigration, the data collected illustrate that some of the respondents functioned within a greatly reduced kinship network.  For instance,  seventeen of the thirty-nine individuals who responded to this question indicated that they had no relatives of the f i r s t ascending generation in Canada, and eleven stated that they had no relatives of their own generation currently residing in Canada. Education and Occupation The majority of the leaders were well educated, and eight of them were classed as professionals of one variety or another.  Many of  the leaders expressed the hope that their children would become professionals, the fields of dentistry and law being cited as particularly attractive.  Aside from this rather high valuation of professionalism,  which actually was directed more toward the leaders' children than toward their own peer group, educational level did not seem particularly important in determining prestige among the leaders.  The following table  indicates the educational achievements of the forty-nine leaders:  121  TABLE IVE Leaders' Educational Achievement None or Grade School Some High School Completed High School Some University Completed University Some Graduate or Professional Training Completed Graduate or Professional Training No Information  0 1 9 9 10 5 8 _3  Total  49 Occupation, business success, and wealth were more often men-  tioned by the respondents as significant in determining prestige than was educational level.  A successful merchant or importer/exporter was  assumed to have sufficient contact and influence to assume leadership positions, as were the lawyers and doctors in the sample.  As one leader  remarked, "The wealthy people have leadership at their c a l l and can have a position i f they want i t . "  It was also noted, however, that some wealthy  Chinese preferred to remain as much as?possible removed from the Chinese community, unless the nature of their business demanded extensive contact with the community.  Some leaders remarked in this regard that men who  had their businesses predominantly within the Chinese community or who were engaged in enterprises with predominantly Chinese goods, services, or clientele, were apt to be active in leadership positions. The leaders interviewed were divided among the following occupations :  122  TABLE IVF Occupations of the Leaders Professional:  Lawyer 6 Other 4 Entrepreneur: Chinese goods, services or clientele Western goods, services or clientele White collar - managerial White collar - other Worker Retired Other No information  6 4 8 6  Total  10 14 15 4 1 1 2 _2 49  Many of the individuals falling in the "white collar - managerial" category were engaged in prestigious, high-income occupations such as that of bank manager. Managers of restaurants were also significant in this category.  One informant remarked with regard to restaurants that  they were "the most important businesses in Chinatown" and that there were three or four really successful ones, each of which was owned, not by one man, but by shareholders who hired managers. About one-half of the leaders interviewed stated that their business contacts were predominantly Chinese, again reinforcing the idea that men who assumed active leadership positions in Chinatown tended to have extensive business contacts within the Chinese community: TABLE IVG Proportion of Business Contacts Chinese Mostly Chinese About Even Mostly Other than Chinese No Information  24 11 9 _5  Total  49  123  Furthermore, when type of occupation is cross-tabluated against proportion of business contacts Chinese, i t can be seen that even occupations that did not demand extensive contact with other Chinese often s t i l l maintained this contact. TABLE IVH Proportion Business Contacts Chinese vs. Occupation Mostly Chinese  Mostly Other  Even  No Information  Professional  5  3  1  1  Entrepreneur, Chinese goods, services or clientele  3  3  1  1  0  1  12  4  2  0  0  0  Qt  1  Other  _2  _0  0_  0_  Total  25  11  9  3  Entrepreneur, Western goods, services or clientele White-Collar Worker  5  0  For example, doctors tended to have predominantly Chinese patients, and white-collar workers were employed in establishments around Chinatown. A few leaders pointed to their bilingualism as significant in their business success, and others remarked that one could never achieve a prominent leadership position or a successful business in Chinatown without proficiency in Cantonese.  124  P o l i t i c a l Alignment In light of the nature of Chinese politics, one would think that a Nationalist/Communist split could create serious factions within the structure of leadership.  In the 1960's, however, the conflict was  not articulated in this manner but as one in which the "neutralists" were opposed to the pro-Kuomintang faction (see below page 98 ). The Canadianborn leaders, in particular, most often adopted a neutralist stance, sometimes coupled with an urgent desire to dissociate themselves from overseas politics entirely.  As one Canadian-born leader stated:  I don't want anything to do with i t ; I don't know which side to take. I'm here i n Canada yet I'm also Chinese i n origin, so what do I do? The Canadian government recognizes one and the English government the other, who is right? The only opposition to the Kuomintang are the Communists and they are nothing in Canada....Personally I don't know. Why, even in travel - I would like to go to the East and see my place of origin, but where exactly should I go? Yet another stated, "Chinese politics are not any good here in Canada they can't help the Chinese." Among the China-born leaders, however, the situation was somewhat different.  Pro- and anti-Kuomintang factions created much antagonism,  and careful efforts were being made on the part of the Chinese Benevolent Association executives to umaintain a political balance. played an important role in this conflict.  The Freemasons  Because of their "neutralist"  stance, they attracted both the younger Canadian-born who wished to d i vorce themselves from the problem as well as those members of the community who had ideological objections to the Kuomintang. None of the leaders were actually pro-communist; however, the fact that Canada had not yet recognized the legitimacy of the Peking government probably stifled any open support for the Chinese Communist Party.  125  In terms of Canadian politics, many of the leaders were Liberals, although their support tended to go to whichever party had the best stand on immigration. Extent of Assimilation Data on the extent of assimilation was not collected in any systematic way. In particular, l i t t l e information was gathered on such questions as proficiency in English, background of wife, number of years spent in China, or holidays observed.  In spite of these deficiencies,  some indication of the extent of assimilation can be gained from data collected concerning proportion of friends Chinese, home address, number of associations belonged to, and general associational a f f i l i a t i o n . a.  Proportion Friends Chinese:  Perhaps the best indirect  measure of assimilation that was collected was on what proportion of the leaders' friends were Chinese.  The results are as follows:  TABLE IVI Proportion of Friends Chinese All Mostly Chinese About Even Mostly Other A l l Other than Chinese No Information  7 18 9 3 1 _11  Total  49  Thus, of the 38 leaders who responded to this question, 34 declared that 50% or more of their friends were Chinese.  j  126  b.  Home Address:  The addresses of the respondents were plotted  on a map of Vancouver to determine whether the leaders were grouped in any particular areas of the city and also to determine what proportion of them resided within the Chinatown district.  It was found that only  four of the thirty-eight leaders who responded to this question resided within the confines of Chinatown, probably a reflection of the fact that most of the leaders wanted to escape the lower-class,unassimilated image that accompanied Chinatown residents.  Of the remainder of the respondents,  four resided in the upper-class suburbs of North and West Vancouver, while the majority lived i n the predominantly middle- and upper-middle-class areas i n the central and eastern parts of the city.  In addition, i t was  found that eight of the leaders lived in a very small area of the city (bounded by 41st Avenue, Oak Street, 49th Avenue, and Ontario), a middle class area that contains many Chinese residents. c.  Number of Associations Belonged To:  This is a very weak  measure of assimilation because i t does not really measure actual participation in the political structure of Chinatown. Many leaders who listed that they were active in only one or two associations had i n the past assumed a variety of executive positions that formed the basis of their prestige during the time of the study.  Others who belonged to only  one formal association often in addition held important positions on the boards of Chinese-language schools and newspapers and on other boards that seemed to be foci for leaders in the community.  These are not i n -  cluded in the following tabulation, but the similarity in function of  127  •these boards to formal associations and their analogous position to associations in the p o l i t i c a l structure has been noted before. TABLE IVJ Number of Associations Belonged To No Number of Associations  _1  _2  Number of Leaders  6 9  3_  _4  5_ j6  12  8  4  4  _7 1  8+  Information  4  1  Table IVJ indicates that fifteen of the leaders belonged to one or two associations, while thirty-three belonged to three or more. Skinner (1958) has postulated for the Chinese community in Bangkok that the number of joint officerships and directorships a leader shares with other leaders can be taken as an index of his politico-economic power. Thus, he maintains that leaders who are officers of more associations and corporations with which other important leaders are also connected w i l l have wider channels of communication and influence.  In Vancouver,  the situation is probably much the same but i t is impossible to say with certainty because an analysis of corporate executives was not included 2 in this study. d.  Associational Affiliations:  It i s assumed that the types  of associations that the leaders tend to patronize w i l l be some indication of the extent of "traditionist" or "modernist" orientation within the group.  Further, the structure of these affiliations should reflect the  basic organization of the associational network as i t existed in the 1960's. No one leader, for instance, belonged to both the Freemasons and to the Kuomintang, given the antagonism between these two associations.  Some  128  leaders, however, belonged both to the C.B.A. and either the Freemasons or the Kuomintang, again indicating the fact the C.B.A. was regarded as neutral territory by the two opposed groups. The group of leaders indicated that they belonged to the three most influential associations in the following proportions:  42% in the  C.B.A., 22% in the Freemasons, and only 10%iin the Kuomintang. These findings correlate with the manner in which these same leaders ranked the relative influence of these associations, but the number of leaders active in the Kuomintang association is surprisingly low.  Many of the  leaders who listed this as a very influential and powerful associaton were not associated with its themselves.  It is probable, therefore,  that the Kuomintang association derived i t s influence, or at least its reputation for influence, from the fact that its leaders were appointed from Taiwan and that i t was the Nationalist government which Canada recognized throughout the 60's.  Even near the end of the 60's, however, and  certainly after Canada recognized the People's Republic of China in 1971, the Kuomintang association declined in importance in terms of the internal politics of the community.  As one leadernstated:  The Kuomintang association is mostly p o l i t i c a l . Frankly speaking, I think the organization is gradually disappearing. Being p o l i t i c a l , i t depends for power on politics, and as i t declines, those who joined to get power w i l l probably leave. Whatever influence remained with the association during this period of decline was certainly limited to the China-born members of the community.  Of the four leaders in the sample associated with the Kuomin-  tang, for instance, a l l were China-born.  Furthermore, almost no Canadian-  129  born Chinese who were interviewed expressed any interest in participating actively in this organization. Fifty-three percent of the leaders interviewed claimed they were active in their respective clan associations.  Rather than indicat-  ing that the clan associations were more influential than the C.B.A., which only attracted 42% of the leaders, these results are a reflection of the fact that whenever a leader assumed a prominent role i n a higher level association, he also tended to join his clan association to gain a wider base of support. On the basis of the data collected on these leaders, then, i t cannot be said that the clan associations appealed only to relatively powerless men who were in need of hostel f a c i l i t i e s or welfare, but, on the contrary, that some important and even "modernist" leaders found use for their clan associations and consolidated their leadership positions 3 by virtue of them. For instance, the f i r s t Chinese to be elected to the federal parliament, a man who considered himself fully "Westernized," was active in his clan association, as was another prominent leader who was on the board of governors of a large Vancouver university and was a successful bank manager. When the leaders' membership in the clan associations i s analyzed by place of birth, i t is seen that Canadian-born and China-born are about equally  represented:  TABLE IVK Place of Birth and Clan Association Membership  Canadian-born China-born  Non-Member  Member  12 10 22  12 13 25  24 23  47  130  The locality associations attracted less active participation from among the forty-nine leaders than did the clan associations. What men were attracted to them seemed to be predominantly China-born. For reasons not entirely clear, then, the locality associations remained much more traditionist in orientation than the clan associations and therefore experienced a decline in p o l i t i c a l efficacy during the 1960's. Conclusions The following conclusions are based on overall impressions gained from my analysis of the interviews.  The most striking  impression  received from the data collected on the forty-nine leaders described above is that the structure of leadership in the Chinese community of Vancouver was by no means homogeneous. The divisions that provided the basis for factional alignment in the leadership structure as a whole and in the community as a whole were also of utmost concern to the leaders interviewed.  Whether China-born or Canadian-born, old or young, tradi-  tionist or modernist in orientation provided bases on which these leaders made distinctions among themselves.  These distinctions in turn gave rise  to different types of leadership, such as second-generation leadership, "traditional" leadership, leaders who strove primarily to represent the community to outsiders, and finally, those who desired to be communitywide leaders.  This latter type of leader, however, was rapidly becoming  a thing of the past, due to the fact that one man could no longer satisfactorily represent a l l the factions within the community. Almost a l l of the leaders interviewed agreed that the Chinese who had influence throughout the whole community was rare or non-existent and that the situation  131  could be better described as one in which some Chinese had influence over certain groups than as one in which one or two leaders had influence over the whole community. Likewise, the extent of assimilation among the leaders interviewed was not uniform.  Some of them - those who were born in China,  spoke Cantonese better than English, had primarily Chinese friends and business contacts, and belonged primarily to associations in the Kuomintang and C.B.A. sectors of the associational network - were extremely traditionist in orientation.  These men could nevertheless attain impor-  tant leadership positions in the community.  They were, however, almost  always internal leaders, their lack of proficiency in English and lack of familiarity with Western custom rendering them unable to have extensive contact with white society. Other leaders were more integrated into the white world but selectively retained certain aspects of Chinese ethnicity. These could be placed in the middle on a continuum of assimilation and consisted of individuals who were both Canadian-born and China-born, who usually did not live in Chinatown but were apt to reside in a Chinese district, who maintained a high valuation of intra-ethnic marriage in general and of different surname marriage in particular, and who tended to marry other Chinese.  However, these same individuals usually had both -Chinese and  white friends, were proficient in English as well as in Cantonese, and had businesses which were not necessarily limited to Chinese clientele or products.  These men belonged to the more "modernist" associations - the  Freemasons, Lions, Elks, or Vets - but would at the same time participate  132  in their clan association or in the traditionist C.B.A2\. Thus, they served to mediate the factions of the community.  It was also these men  who, because they had one foot in the Chinese community and the other out, hadcenough contact with the white world and enough familiarity with i t s ways to represent the Chineseccommunity  effectively to the outside.  They  were sufficiently assimilated to be able to meet the leaders of the Canadian government in the framework of the dominant culture, yet they also had an intimate knowledge of the Chinese community.  Skinner, referring  to the situation in Thailand, termed these "leaders from the periphery" because their ethnic orientation (and loyalty) is mixed (1958: 243). The leaders who were the most assimilated in the group typically had the following characteristics.  Many of them lived in white neighbor-  hoods, some in the wealthy suburbs of North and West Vancouver, usually spoke English at home, and had predominantly white friends.  They were  often charitably inclined towards the Chinese community, either for sentimental reasons or because they might have made their fortunes from Chinese customers or products. In addition,they would often accept honorary positions in the community but shunned active participation.  Others in  this group were of more middle-class background and belonged only to the more modernist associations. The leaders interviewed differed from the general population of the Chinese community in that they were probably slightly wealthier on the average and were apt to be better educated.  They were similar  to the general population in that they were divided by the same loyalties and by the same issues.  The ways in which they differed from the leader-  ship elite is the next topic of discussion.  133  FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER IV It is doubtful whether the two men who stated they immigrated to Canada during the Exclusion Act of 1923-1947 actually immigrated from China directly to Canada during this period. Perhaps they immigrated to the States at an earlier period and then to Canada. For this reason, I have grouped them with the pre-1923 immigrant group rather than with the post-1947 group. On the basis of the data collected for this study, however, I believe that further research may prove that the economic and p o l i t i c a l systems of the Vancouver Chinese community are more discrete than those of the Bangkok community studied by Skinner (1958). Should this be the case, a calculation of an "interlock score" for the Vancouver Chinese leaders would be a measure more of administrative and represen tational influence than of economic power. These findings contradict those of Willmott's (1964: 33). He found that the clan associations drew their major support from elderly China-born males without families who were relatively powerless in the context of the community's p o l i t i c a l system. I found to the contrary that a significant proportion of the more powerful leaders of the community, as well as a good number of Canadian-born Chinese, were active in the clan associations.  134  CHAPTER V THE LEADERSHIP ELITE  This chapter deals with the types of elites and hierarchies operative within the leader category, the social characteristics of men with high influence, and the ideological bases of this influence. These topics are discussed with reference to a particular elite that was isolated in the following manner. The analysis of the leadership elite is based on a selection of 30 men (of the 152) who were judged to be particularly influential in certain respects.  The selection was accomplished by means of tally-  ing the total number of times any one leader was nominated by interview respondents as being one of ten men who would be "influential enough to make an important project affecting most of the CGhinese in Vancouver go through."  Any leader that received two or more mentions was included  in the category "leadership elite", and the group was then ranked i n ternally according to number of nominations received. The word "elite", however, is used with caution because i t is recognized that different elites exist with respect to different key cultural values and that, in particular, the internal ranking of the elite in question could differ with respect to different issues.  It is in  fact a major point of this paper that leadership in the Vancouver Chinese community has become a great deal more diversified over time and that the situation in the 1960's can be more correctly described as one in which possession of different key values forms the basis of different leadership  135  "elites" than one in which there is a single hierarchy of leaders. Therefore, for the purposes of this investigation, the term "leadership e l i t e " refers to those men selected by the interview respondents as most likely to make an important project affecting the majority of the Chinese 1 succeed.  It i s stressed that this elite i s defined operationally and  that i t i s only one elite among others, based on the possession of certain attributes and not others.  However, since the defining attributes of  this elite deal not only with possession of a high degree of influence but also with the probable exercise of this influence, they seem to be 2 quite significant in a study of leadership. The elite in question, then, i s based fairly broadly on general influence and prestige.  It was found that the type of all-around com-  munity leader of generalized influence who played such an important part in the early history of the community was no longer in existence in the 1960's.  There were four men in the community, however, who came closer  to this "ideal" type of leadership than others.  They were cited again  and again as men who had earned a great deal of respect and prestige in the community as a whole, who had the greatest amount of information about Chinatown, and who were called on to represent the community to various interested groups.  These four leaders are termed "most influen-  t i a l " , and an attempt i s made to describe each one individually. In addition to these four leaders, about fifteen others were cited as "general influentials."  These were men who were known throughout  the community but who had not attained quite the same stature as the four singled out for special consideration.  A few of them, however, seemed to  136  be on their way to replacing the older members of the "most influential" group.  The general attributes of these leaders are described. The remaining members of the leadership elite (about ten) were  for the most part people whose reputations were based on a specific achievement in certain areas.  Thus, members of this group were known  for such things as their efforts in revitalizing the Chinese Public School, their stand on the redevelopment issue, or their political a f f i l i a t i o n . The following general questions concerning political elites within the Chinese community in Vancouver are posed.  To what extent is  the mercantile elite integrated into the p o l i t i c a l elite?  To what extent  do other key cultural values, such as wealth or education, converge within an elite based on influence and prestige? And, finally, what role does assimilation play in the acquisition of high influence? The Four Most Influential Leaders When these four individuals are viewed as a set, several salient characteristics stand out.  A l l belong to one or the other of the  two dominant clans in the Chinese community, and a l l are relatively senior in age (especially in comparison to the leader category as a whole), the oldest being in his seventies and the youngest in his f i f t i e s . bom  A l l were  in China but immigrated to Canada when they were quite young, the  oldest being 17 when he immigrated and the youngest merely a baby.  An  even more striking similarity among these men is that they a l l immigrated during the very short period of 1909 to 1911, reaching Canada at a time when anti-Oriental feelings were becoming more and more intense, when Chinese had to pay a severe head tax to enter the country, and when the Chinese population in British Columbia consisted mainly of single males.  137  These men shared the similar experience of having to cope with racial prejudice in an increasingly hostile environment. Wong Foon Sein:  Wong Foon Sein is perhaps the most well known  Chinese leader of the Chinese community, both internally and externally. Often called the "Mayor of Chinatown", Foon Sein was undoubtedly an undisputed leader of the Chinese community for about twenty years in the nineteenth century. A man deeply steeped in the early history of the Chinese in Canada, Wong Foon Sein devoted his l i f e to bettering the position of the QQriental in Canada.  Born in Kwangtung, Foon Sein came to  Canada at the age of nine and settled in the mining town of Cumberland with his father.  He was one of the f i r s t Chinese to attend the University  of British Columbia and, after graduating, obtained a job as court interpreter at a time when jobs for Orientals were severely restricted.  Foon  Sein's reputation as a leader is almost exclusively based on his unrelenting service to the Chinese community rather than on prestige gained through wealth or position.  In a memorial article, the Chinatown News  described him as "a legendary name in the Chinese Canadian community" (1971:  Vol. 18:  34).  Foon Sein married a non-Chinese Canadian woman whose family had come from Nottingham, England in the 1930's.  They had three children.  In 1936, he quit his job as interpreter to become full-time secretary of the  Chinese Benevolent Association.  as a translator.  During World War II, Foon was drafted  In 1948, after the war, he became president of the  C.B.A. for twelve consecutive years. Throughout this time, he led campaigns for the enfranchisment of Chinese Canadians and made twelve " p i l -  138  grimages" to Ottawa to obtain a relaxation of the severe and unjust immigration laws that pertained to Orientals at that time.  In 1959, he  retired from his position as head of the C.B.A. but was asked to remain the organization's permanent senior advisor. Foon Sein's participation in and commitment to the Chinese community was immense.  In addition to his central role in the C.B.A.,  Foon was active in the Wong Kong Har Tong [Huang Jiang-xia Tang] , the Canada-China Citizens Council, the Chinese Trade Workers' Association, and the Hoy Sun [Tai-shan] Locality Association.  Because of his role  as spokesman and representative for the community, he was also active in many non-Chinese organizations such as the Vancouver Civic Association, the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews, the Liberal Party, and the B.C. Ethnic sub-committee.  Because of these and other contributions,  Foon Sein was chosen Citizen of the Year by the Vancouver City Council in 1959. Foon Sein's views of Chinatown are based on a long historical perspective and great familiarity with the community.  When interviewed  in 1965, Foon Sein s t i l l maintained that the C.B.A. was the most important organization in Chinatown, although he was troubled by i t s apparent decline.  As he stated,  The C.B.A. i s supposed to protect the Chinese and help them, but now i t is becoming impotent. In my day, i f the police saw a Chinese f a l l down - maybe he was old and got tired, say -"then they would just phone us up and send him in a taxi and we would pay for everything. The C.B.A. is more necessary than ever now. It changes with the times and does different things but i t is s t i l l important....  139  There i s no doubt that during the mid-sixties, Foon Sein was s t i l l an important leader ing  in Chinatown and that his efforts at represent-  the Chinese-Canadian people to the federal and provincial governments  were successful. stemmed from a  The type of leader that Foon Sein represented, however, time when the Chinese community formed an island within  a hostile milieu and thus when the need for a powerful a l l around community leader was great. As more and more Chinese came to regard themselves  as  an integral part of Canadian society, the type of leadership  that Foon Sein exercised in the earlier history of the community became obsolete.  The man himself, however, adapted to the changing conditions  and by the mid-sixties exercised a type of leadership more in tune, with the times. Wong Foon Sein died i n 1971, and, in spite of his controvers i a l l y and the inevitable political enemies he had made, he was mourned by the entire community. Leader #2:  This leader, who was about sixty at the time data  was being collected for this study, immigrated from China when he was about five years old. Until he was 18, he attended Chinese school after hours of public school in order to perfect his written and spoken Chinese.  In the late thirties, he earned a degree in Commerce and had hopes  of becoming a lawyer.  The Chinese were prohibited from practicing law  at that time, however, and this leader states, "I couldn't see myself being a lawyer  i f I couldn't practice in court."  ing a Canadian-born  Instead, after marry-  Chinese wife, he opened a general agency in which  he sold l i f e insurance, did some interpreting, and some work as a notary  140  public.  In the 1940's, he extended this business into a highly suc-  cessful enterprise which caters mostly to a Chinese clientele.  In 1967,  the Chinatown News reported that a new building worth $100,000 was being built on his property. Leader ill has a large family, remarking in this regard that "the old Chinese like to have many children."  In spite of his many busi-  ness and family commitments, he was very active in the p o l i t i c a l structure of the Chinese community.  He formerly had been national head of  his clan association for two years and at the time of the study was simultaneously active in the C.B.A. executive, on the board of a Chinese language school, president of his locality association, president of an athletic club, and on the director's committee of the Chinese Chamber of Commerce. This leader believed that the C.B.A. was the most important association in the Chinese community, while the importance of the Vets and Lions was diminished because they were not really traditional Chinese associations.  As he states, "The Lions and the Vetss are good clubs -  but they are not really Chinese.  They don't even report their activities  to the Chinese newspapers." He also pointed out that there was l i t t l e real cooperation was their any  within Chinatown, that the definition of the community  problematic, and that many leaders did not really know the sense of projects. Somewhat regretfully he noted that there was no longer one person who was able to represent Chinatown i n i t s entirety. This individual was proud of being a self-made man, of never  having had to work for  other people, and of the time he had spent in  141  community service.  He was widely respected and known throughout the  community and was the person most often referred to when asked what person "knew what was going on in the Chinese community." The type of leader that this individual represented can best be illustrated by naming some of the activities he was involved in near the end of the 60's. eral, spoke at the  That he attended a dinner given by the Consul GenC.B.A. anniversary of the Republic of China, attended  a meeting for prominent Hong Kong travel agents, represented the C.B.A. at a K.M.T. convention, presented immigration briefs to the Canadian government, and welcomed the Republic of China's Ambassador to Canada in 1967 a l l attest to in the  the fact that he was a singularly influential man  Chinese community, one who helped bridge the gap between the  Chinese and the wider Canadian society. Leader #3:  Leader #3 was perhaps an equally influential lea-  der as leader #2 but in quite a different manner. In his f i f t i e s at the time of the study, he was born in Kwangchow and immigrated to Canada as a baby. He returned to China, however, to study the Confucian classics before graduating from a Canadian university in economics and marrying  a Canadian-born Chinese woman. They had four children. Leader #3 speaks English, French, and Cantonese fluently, and  admits that his multi-lingualism had been an aid in his nineteen years in a bank adjacent  to the Chinese district.  home in West Vancouver ture.  He  This leader maintained a  and was very active in the associational struc-  tended, however, to assume more positions in the national and  international branches of Chinese associations than in the local ones,  142  and some people therefore reported that he had a wider reputation internationally than locally.  In the sixties, he was active in his clan  association and was the charter president of one of the newer fraternal associations.  In addition, he was a member of the board of directors of  the international body of this last association, deputy chairman of the Vancouver Community Chest, on the Board of St. Joseph's Hospital, member of a community church, and on the Royal Commission of Bilingualism and Biculturalism. Leader #3 felt that the most important aspect of leadership was to "give  your time and your money without thinking of yourself and  to do a lot of work for  others."  He noted quite perceptively that:  Chinatown is a community with a great diversity of thought and points of view, but the whole community can usually come together in times of c r i s i s . The older generation jealously guards their position and is very eager to keep the Chinese culture and pass i t on to the younger generation. He maintained that the C.B.A. (of which he was not a member) was "mainly a steadying influence on the community" and stressed the function of the Lions as "completely a service group, giving everything and taking nothing; i t i s non-political, non-denominational, non-racial, just a service club." by any serious  He further maintained that Chinatown was not divided issues or factions.  This leader's business activities in the early sixties included a trip to Bangkok to attend the 4th Asian Chinese Overseas Merchants Trade Convention and travels to Japan and Southeast Asia in which he was impressed with the "booming industries" of Singapore and Malaysia.  143  The Chinatown News noted in addition that he was very well received in Taiwan. He has been termed a leader in the financial f i e l d , an apt characterisation that lies at the basis of his influentiality. Leader #4; Leader #4, a distinguished gentleman in his seventies when this study was carried out, had immigrated from Tai-Shan when he was in his teens. toria, and they  He married a Chinese woman who was born in Vic-  had a large family.  This leader was one of the few  men i n the community who was seen as a real community leader in spite of the fact that as the most  his prestige was largely based on wealth. Rated  wealthy member of the community by many informants, he was  nevertheless a very active and trusted leader and was known as a philanthropist locally and in Hong Kong. As past president of his clan association, leader #4 had earned an international reputation which was enhanced by the important directorships he held in other associations:  the Chinese Public  School, the New Republic Daily, and the Vancouver Chinese Commerce Association.  In addition, this leader was active in his locality asso-  ciation and in the Lions Club. Labelled "a captain of commerce" because offhis success as a merchant, leader //4 noted in an interview that his business contacts were  for theemost part Chinese.  His sons have also made distinguished  careers for themselves, and three of them have also based their successes on Chinese relationships. Two of this leaderAs sons have assumed active leadership positions in the Chinese community and are included in the leadership elite  category of this study.  Also interesting is the  144  fact that one of his daughters married into another extremely wealthy Vancouver Chinese family, thus linking two of the wealthiest Chinese families in Vancouver. When  interviewed in 1965, leader #4 insisted he was no longer  really active, and i t i s true that his sons had assumed some of the leadership responsibilities he himself could no longer handle. For a man of his age, however, his leadership was s t i l l actively sought, and his many contributions to the community during his long l i f e had insured  his place as one of the most prominent men i n the community. These  four brief l i f e histories indicate some aspects of  the characteristics of high influence i n the Chinese community of the 1960's. A long record of community service coupled with financial standing was  important in a l l but one case, as was having both the  contacts and the ability to represent the community to the outside world.  Of a l l the men in the "leadership e l i t e " category (thirty indi-  viduals) , Foon Sein and Leader #2 were most often cited as men who represented the Chinese before the Vancouver, British Columbia, and federal governments.  Leader #3 was also important in this respect, although  not to the same extent as the other two. Leader #4, however, was never mentioned i n this category and was to a much greater extent solely an "internal" leader than were the other three men. In terms of associations, two of the four men had derived their primary recognition from the C.B.A., one from one of the newer fraternal associations, and one from his clan association. The leaders were quite varied in educational achievement and occupation.  Of more  145  significance than these factors, then, seems to be the fact that a l l were older,  successful China-born immigrants who had migrated before  the Exclusion Act of 1923. Also uniting these men in a different manner i s the fact that the type of leadership they exercised was rapidly becoming obsolete by the end of the sixties. Other Influential Leaders The importance  of the category of "Other Influential Leaders"  lies i n the fact that i t contained the basis for a new type of leadership within the Chinese community. Many of the men who f e l l into this category were younger  i n age, more modernist in orientation, and less apt  to aspire to be "all-around" leaders than were those in the "most i n fluential" bracket. Another significant characteristic of this group was that the majority of i t s members were Canadian-born.  Moreover,  very few of the China-born members in this group had immigrated in the pre-1923 days of harsh discrimination.  Thus, a different type of  mentality was markedly apparent in most of these men:  they were more  in tune with Canada and less aware of the struggle that the early Chinese immigrants to British Columbia had faced. In terms of age, over half  of the sixteen men in this category were under forty-five, and  only three were over 60. Many of the younger members of this group commented on the "very distinct" generation gap between them and the older members of the community.  In addition, they noted a lack of lea-  ders i n the middle-aged brackets due to the fact that immigration was prohibited from 1923 to 1947 and that many members of the Canadian-born population had.not yet reached this age.  146  In terms of education, the group as a whole was well educated. Only  three of i t s members did not have the equivalent of a university  education.  Another respect in which this group differed from the general  category "leader" was collar/managerial  that there was a greater representation of white-  occupations represented and fewer entrepreneurs.  Con-  sidering that, historically, leadership in the Vancouver Chinese community was almost completely based on merchant and entrepreneur status (see below, page 106), this represents a significant change. Also interesting is the fact that kin ties united this group with the four "most influential" leaders and created strong bonds within the group i t s e l f .  For instance, leader #2 of the most influential lea-  der group married the  sister of one of the men in the group of "general  influentials", and, as mentioned before, leader #4's sons were also part of the  leadership elite.  son and two brothers.  Also within the group were a father and  These kinship relations were not researched in a  systematic manner, and more of them may well exist. Some of the second-generation  leaders of this group deserve  particular mention because their views were markedly different from those of  the more  traditional leaders.  t i c , and sometimes more cynical. that  Often, they were more realis-  One such leader stated, for instance,  "there are no unchallenged leaders in the community" and that: The Chinese do not elect someone because he has a good education or something, but for what he can do for them or give to them. They elect men with influence and wealth.  147  Many of these leaders expressed concern i n their interviews that secondgeneration leaders receive adequate attention and recognition in the community and that the traditionist associations become more representative  in their membership and goals. Some of these leaders devoted  themselves to encouraging the active participation of Chinese youth in the associational structure, and new youth and athletic clubs were established for this purpose. Several members  of this group, however, were extremely tra-  ditionist in orientation, belonging to such associations as the clan, locality, C.B.A., and Kuomintang. One such leader was widely known throughout the community but definitely remained an "internal" leader due to his limited, proficiency in Englsih and to his involvement with overseas rather than local issues.  Popular with the more traditional  members of the community, his strongly pro-Kuomintang stand alienated him from many of the younger members of the community. The Social Characteristics of the Leadership Elite The social characteristics of the men belonging to the leadership elite  category, then, were quite diverse.  Wealth was an important  factor, but i t could no longer be said that the mercantile elite was synonomous with  the political elite.  Informants were asked, for i n -  stance, to name the five wealthiest Chinese in the city, and there was a remarkable consensus as to who these five men were. Only two of these five  men, however, f e l l into the leadership elite category. The other  three were  not integrated into the leadership structure at a l l and  148  seemed to  have played no part in Chinatown politics.  As one leader  stated, "the most important businessmen aren't in Chinatown at a l l . " There is no doubt, however, that wealth, financial contributions, and business success were very important in gaining influence in the community. Another leader stated in this regard that: Money in and of itself doesn't give a person prestige among the Chinese. Itissmore what money can do for you, I guess. Some people could have the presidency of any association they wanted. Not becuase they have lots of money, but because the people would know that they have lots of time to devote to their duties as an officer. Also when they already have money, people know that they aren't in the association to further themselves.... Wealth, then, was  an important factor in leadership as i t was an impor-  tant key value in the society i t s e l f .  It was not a necessary pre-  requisite of high influence, but those men whose leadership was coupled with solid financial backing were nevertheless seen by the community as being the most reliable and enduring. When the interview respondents were asked "How leader gain  influence; what must he have or do?", by far the readiest  answer was wealth.  Other aspects of influence that the respondents men-  tioned, however, were also enlightening. was  does a Chinese  For instance, participation  mentioned second most frequently, being a "doer" and "working" for  one's leadership position being seen as an integral part of gaining prominence.  In addition, organizational abilities were quite frequently  mentioned, as were enthusiasm for welfare, community s p i r i t , good conduct, knowledge  and r e l i a b i l i t y .  Table VA l i s t s how the interview res-  149  pondents thought  influence was gained, and the number of "votes" given  to each attribute. TABLE VA The Acquisition of Influence Wealth, contributions, financial background, business success  19  Time,  13  participation by "working for i t "  Organizational abilities  8  Community spirit, interest in the Chinese  5  Good conduct and  4  reliability  Education  4  Age  2  Long residence in Chinatown  2  Contact with  2  Occidentals  It can be seen that several key cultural values converge to form a p o l i t i c a l elite based on generalized influence and prestige. Wealth, participation, community " s p i r i t " and good conduct are obviously crucial components of this elite status, while such criteria as educational attainment and age were  secondarily important.  Not mentioned by any one respondent in particular, but a theme which emerged from the interviews as a whole was a growing emphasis on achievement as  a criterion for successful leadership.  Thus, a gradual  trend away from particularism towards universalism could be discerned in the leadership structure at large. clan might have been  While membership in the strongest  a pre-requisite for leadership in the early days  of the community, in the 1960's people were more apt to validate leadership on the basis  of achieved, rather than ascribed, criteria.  It can  150  be predicted, therefore, that there will be a move away from an emphasis on age, clan a f f i l i a t i o n , and kin ties as components of leadership ideology towards the more universalistic criteria of success in the business world, professional status, success in negotiating with representatives of the Canadian government, and achievement in the wider society surrounding the Chinese community. As success and achievement come to be judged more and more by the values of the dominant society, the role of assimilation in leadership should become even more important.  This increased valuation of  the  mores of the dominant society, however, w i l l do nothing to lessen  what  Skinner has termed "the paradox of overseas Chinses leadership"  (1968: 192).  Since  leadership in the Chinese community couples  achievement in the outside world with a positive valuation of things Chinese, interest in the Chinese, and promotion of these interests, the leaders  w i l l s t i l l be torn between two fundamentally opposed tendencies,  and their ethnic orientations w i l l remain mixed. that this  Skinner suggested  paradox is a necessary aspect of successful Chinese leader-  ship in Thailand.  Perhaps i t is also a necessary concomitant of Chi-  nese leadership in Vancouver.  151  FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER V 1.  The specific nature of this hypothetical project was not further defined i n the interview schedules.  2.  Skinner (1958) defines e l i t e status with regard to possession of influence and leader status with regard to the exercise of this influence. Although this differntiation issnot rigidly adhered to here, i t s general validity i s recognized. See Skinner's analysis of the Bangkok Chinese leadership elite (1958: 77-109).  152  CHAPTER VI THE  In spite  WIDER PERSPECTIVE  of the vast differences in the host communities to  which the Chinese have immigrated, the persistence of distinct Chinese settlements alone is a matter of interest.  But the fact that these  settlements exhibit so many similarities in organization and structure is a matter that calls for empirical investigation and explanation. Freedman has noted that the persistence of overseas Chinese communities cannot be attributed the  merely  to the migrants' origin in China, but that  social organization of these communities plays a crucial role in  their continuing existence (1965: 3). It i s unfortunate, however, that most general perspectives on overseas Chinese social organization have limited themselves to Southeast Asian examples and materials. of the ties  segmentary structure of urban Southeast Asian Chinese communiis a case in point.  ments on does  Crissman's ideal-type model  the  One of the best overall theoretical treat-  subject of overseas Chinese, Crissman's work nevertheless  not integrate the examples of North American Chinese settlements  into i t s framework. Now that more material on the North American Chinese has have  become available i t is important to analyze what these new findings to say about the Chinese overseas. Data  recently collected concerning North American Chinese  communities, then, may indicate that an expansion, but not a rejection, of some df Crissman's ideas are in order. As Crissman himself admits,  153  the model he presents may " f i t certain historical periods better than present situations certainly more immediately apparent i n the organization  of some  communities than others" (1967: 85).  Basing  his remarks on data collected from the Chinese community of Sacramento, California, Weiss, for instance, objects to Crissman's model on the grounds that i t assumes that a l l associations owe allegiance to a common ideology,  that they are a l l contained within a single hierarchical  and segmentary framework, and that the leaders of high-level associations are also represented  in lower-level associations.  Because of these assump-  tions, argues Weiss, the model cannot account for the growth of new types of associations such as he found i n Sacramento (1971: 234). Weiss proposes instead a tri-partite organization for the Sacramento community that includes Crissman's model as a sub-system. The components of this organization are: attempts  i ) the traditionist sector, which  to perpetuate traditional Chinese culture i n a new setting;  i i ) the modernist sector, which wishes to blend Chinese heritage with the  American experience; and i i i ) the activist sector, which wishes to  substitute Chinese exclusivity in favor of a pan-Asian identity and which calls for a reorganization of society at large (1971: 4).  Weiss  maintains that Crissman's model accurately describes the organization of the f i r s t sector but ignores the competition offered by the other two. Willmott maintains that for Phnom-Penh both the traditionist and modernist associations f i t into the segmentary model described by Crissman (personal communication).  For Vancouver, however, I believe  that the political system as a whole is better analyzed in terms of net-  154  works as defined by Skinner (1958: 200) than in terms of the hierarchical segmentary structure described by Crissman. of conceptualization  Certainly, these two methods  are not incompatible, and the Vancouver community  does exhibit many instances of segmentation such as described by Crissman for urban Chinese settlements!in Southeast Asia.  The overall picture  in Vancouver, however, is in many ways similar to that in Sacramento, i.e., i t is not strictly hierarchical; associations are not united with respect to a common  ideology, and leaders of lower-range associations are not  always represented higher up.  Furthermore, the kind of segmentation  described by Crissman was more apparent in the Kuomintang and Neutralist sectors was  of the associational structure (see Figure 1, page 100) than i t  in the more modernist, Freemason sector.  The Freemason sphere did  not include many of the traditionist clan and locality associations upon which segmentation was traditionally based, and i t maintained fewer interlocking directorships with the Neutralist sector than did the Kuomintang sphere. As mentioned before, the most modernist associations of this period - the Lions, Elks, and Vets - were not even asked to send o f f i c i a l representatives to the C.B.A. council, and only one of these three organizations - the Lions - maintained any informal links with the C.B.A. The  situation in Vancouver, then, was more one in which fac-  tions of associations proclaimed allegiance to different ideologies and were engaged that was  in competition for power within a wider p o l i t i c a l system  loosely and fluidly defined with respect to informal inter-  locking directorships than one in which the traditional criteria of surname,  155  clan,  and  dialect group produced a segmentary and hierarchical struc-  turing of associations that had at i t s apex one organization such as a Chinese Chamber of Commerce or a Chinese Benevolent Association. Further, although I am unaware of the precise factions that are operative in the Vancouver Chinese community today, I would venture to guess that the more activist and pro-People's Republic of China associations maintain few links with  the more traditional and conservative Chinese Benevolent  Association and none, of course, with the Kuomintang. The extent of inter-connection among traditionist, modernist, and activist associations in overseas Chinese communities in North America and  in Southeast Asia is a topic that demands further comparative  research.  Another area in which f r u i t f u l comparative work might be  carried out i s that of investigating the kind and nature of leadership that has arisen  in each overseas Chinese community.  It is not within  the scope of this thesis to present an extended discussion of the parti1 cularities  of  the various overseas Chinese settlements now i n existence;  however, in order to place the findings on Chinese leadership presented in this paper in some perspective, I w i l l briefly comment on the kind of  leadership that has arisen in a few other overseas communities and  on some common themes that these cursory comparisons bring to mind. Willmott has documented for colonial times in Phnom-Penh, the Chinese were placed by the French into congregations on the basis of place of origin.  The head,or chef, of each congregation was chosen by  the Chinese themselves but "had many responsibilities i n the French colonial regime" (1969: 283).  In recent times, the power of a leader i s  156  no longer  externally validated, and the associational structure is  more complex than was the congregation system organized by the French for administrative purposes.  Willmott notes, however, that "Today's most  powerful leaders not only transcend the congregation; they transcend Chinese community  the  i t s e l f " (1970: 126), indicating that high ethnicity  is not a part of successful leadership in Phnom-Penh. For Bangkok, Skinner states that a Thai orientation among the leaders that  was "most positively associated with total influence" and  with regard  to education, these leaders formed "a privileged  group within Bangkok Chinese society" (1958: 40).  Furthermore, these  leaders were "an eloquent testimony of the high evaluation of wealth in overseas Chinese society and of the exceptional money-making abilities of this group of Chinese leaders" (1958: 48). community,  For the Bangkok Chinese  then, the most successful Chinese leaders are almost always  "leaders from the periphery of Chinese society and culture" (1958: 239). T'ien, writing in the f i f t i e s , maintained that in Sarawak the British system of indirect rule encouraged the development of a Chinese leadership e l i t e .  Economic strength was the main path to social  power, and a l l Chinese leaders were wealthy (1953: 69).  In addition, a  highly developed system of patronage existed, leaders often being termed "back-mountains". good  Further, the size of a patron's "clientele" gave a  index of his power. Thus, wealth played a great role in the defi-  nition of  Chinese leadership in Sarawak. In the Semarang studied by D. Willmott in the f i f t i e s , the  clearest social boundary within the Chinese community was that between  157  Totok (China-born Chinese) and Peranakan (roughly, the descendants of a Chinese father  and Indonesian mother).  At this time, no leaders were  acknowledged by the whole community, although historically under the Dutch kapitan system, this was not the case.  The social characteristics  of leaders included wealth, organizational a b i l i t i e s , p o l i t i c a l neutrality, and ease in getting along with people (D. Willmott 1960: 152,  162).  Baureiss' sample of 192 Chinese males in Calgary, Canada revealed that 70% of this group belonged to at least one association (1971: 93). These associations included clan, locality, Freemason, and Kuomintang organizations that were autonomous locally but that had headquarters in Vancouver.  Baureiss notes that the associations were "run by a relatively  small and select group" and that there was "an element of suspicion exhibited .. .towards a Chinese community.  who had been too successful in the host  The person with modestn success in the host community but  actively involved in Chinese organizations..." emerged as a leader (1971: 133). important  He also noted that leaders with "high ethnicity" became  persons within the Chinese community, though "they failed to  become leaders in  the larger community for that very reason" (1971: 133) .  Finally, I turn to the new territories in Hong Kong, where, like the situation in Southeast Asia, colonialism left i t s mark on the type of leadership that emerged there.  Johnson reports for Tsuen Wan,  for instance, that leadership was "largely the preserve of the middle ranks of economic power" and that this was "a contrast to the prevailing pattern throughout the overseas Chinese areas" (1971b: 215).  The lea-  ders were nevertheless highly educated and were defined with respect to  158  associations and elected village representation.  The situation in Tsuen  Wan, however, was complicated by the fact that separate native and migrant communities existed and that the British aimed to "protect" the original inhabitants of the area, thus ensuring certain advantages for them in the area of leadership. These brief comments about the nature of leadership in other Chinese communities indicate that i t might be particularly worthwile to examine the variables of ethnicity, wealth, and education in the recruitment of overseas Chinese leaders. The general trend seems to be toward relatively low ethnicity, high wealth, and above-average education, a l though there are important exceptions to this generalization that need explanation.  A rigorous cross-cultural analysis of this problem, then,  might yield some interesting insights.  With respect to the Vancouver  Chinese, i t can be seen from the few comparative comments presented here that the high valuation of wealth and assimilation that the Vancouver leaders generally maintain is not an uncommon phenomenon among overseas Chinese communities. Among the overseas Chinese, leadership almost always seemstto occur within the context of an associational network. Wang Gungwu has said with regard to Chinese associations that: We may even go so far as to say that, where the government was not Chinese and not likely ever to be Chinese, these organizations provided the community with i t s highest kind of politics and at one level a very complex and demanding politics at that (1970: 9). The Vancouver case illustrates the complexity of these politics very well.  As the Chinese community was faced with the impact of population  159  growth, economic changes, and increasing urbanization, i t s p o l i t i c a l system became progressively diversified and complex. The complexity of Chinese politics in Vancouver also results from the fact that there has not been a linear progression from relative particularism to universalism in the recruitment of leadership and association membership, but that these two principles have been used together or intermittently. For instance, Johnson notes with regard to Tsuen Wan that: One of the peculiar features of voluntary associations is that particularism is invariably used as a basis of recruitment and yet the ends of most of these organizations are to gain some accommodation with the demands of a society whose major characteristics are universalistic (1971a: 143). This paradoxical situation can also be found among the Vancouver Chinese. Thus, as in the case of many other ethnic groups, recruitment on the basis of origin, generation, and kinship a f f i l i a t i o n remain? significant in the Vancouver community. This study was conceived with the idea of providing a background for further research on the Vancouver Chinese.  The question that immed-  iately presents itself as relevant for future research is that of how  the  community of the sixties described in this thesis compares with the community of today.  To what extent is particularism s t i l l a basis for re-  cruitment within the political system, and what are the factional alignments among associations and the kind of leadership operative today?  Another  crucial but as yet unanswered question concerns the impact of the influx of new migrants from Hong Kong on the social organization of the community.  160  From a wider perspective, i t is also important to deal with the question of how Canadian Chinese communities compare with those in the United States and in Southeast Asia.  For instance, given the dif-  ferences in immigration legislation but the relative proximity of Canada and the United States, what are the salient differences among Chinese communities within these two countries?  Also interesting from a com-  parative perspective is the fact that many Chinese communities in Southeast Asia exhibit a proliferation of religious associations and temples.  Aside from Christian church groups, I have found no evidence  for the existence of religious associations in the Vancouver Chinese community.  It would be useful to investigate whether this is a particu-  larity of the Vancouver Chinese community or whether i t is a general difference among Chinese communities in Southeast Asia and those in North America. Finally,',as I have suggested throughout this thesis, an i n quiry into the nature of North American Chinese social organization would in general benefit from controlled comparisons with Southeast Asian Chinese communities.  Although much work has already been done in this direc-  tion, more field studies and historical research are in order.  FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER VI For a good discussion of the differences among Southeast Asian Chinese communities see Freedman and Willmott's "South-east Asia with Special Reference to the Chinese" (1961) and Willmott's "The Chinese in Southeast Asia" (1966).  162  BIBLIOGRAPHY Balandier, Georges 1970 Political Anthropology.  New York, Random House.  Barth, Frederik 1969 Ethnic Groups and Boundaries: The Social Organization of Cultural Difference. Boston, L i t t l e Brown and Co. Baureiss, Gunther A. 1971 The City and the Subcommunity: the Chinese of Calgary. Unpublished M.A. Thesis, The University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta. Blythe, Wilfred 1969 The Impact of Chinese Secret Societies in Malaya. London, Kuala Lumpur, and Hong Kong, Oxford University Press. Campbell, Persia Crawford 1923 Chinese Coolie Emigration to Countries Within the British Empire. London, P.S. King and Son, Ltd. Cheng, Tien-Fang ~ ^ 1931 Oriental Immigration in China. Press Ltd. tyjJ  Shanghai, The Commercial  Cho, George and Leigh, Roger 1972 Patterns of Residence Among the Chinese in Vancouver. In: Peoples of the Living Land, ed. J.V. Minghi. Vancouver, Tantalus Research Limited. Corbett, David C. 1957 Canada's Immigration Policy: versity of Toronto Press.  A Critique.  Toronto, Uni-  Crissman, Lawrence W. 1967 The Segmentary Structure of Overseas Chinese. 185-204.  Man 2:  Erickson, Bonnie H. 1966 Prestige, Power, and the Chinese. Unpublished M.A. Thesis, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia. Fallers, L.A. 1967 Introduction. In: Immigrants and Associations, ed. L.A. Fallers. The Hague and Paris, Mouton.  163  Fortes, M. and Evans-Pritchard, E.E. 1940 African Political Systems.  London, Oxford University Press.  Freedman, Maurice 1957 Chinese Family and Marriage in Singapore. Majesty's Stationery Office.  London, Her  1958  Lineage Organization in Southeastern China. Athlone Press.  London, The  1963  A Chinese Phase in Social Anthropology. nal of Sociology 244(no. 1): 1-19.  1965  The Chinese in South-East Asia: A Longer View. Occasional Papers 14, London, The China Society.  1967  Immigrants and Associations: Chinese in 19th Century Singapore. In: Immigrants and Associations, ed. L.A. Fallers. The Hauge and Paris, Mouton.  The British Jour-  Freedman, Maurice and Willmott, William E. 1961 South-East Asia, With Special Reference to the Chinese. International Social Science Journal 13 (no. 2): 245-270. Gluckman, Max 1955 Custom and Conflict in Africa.  Glencoe, Free Press.  Gordon, Milton M. 1964 Assimilation in American Life: The Roles of Race,Religion, and National Origins. ' New York, Oxford University Press. Hawkins, Freda 1972 Canada and Immigration: Public Policy and Public Concern. Montreal and London, McGill - Queen's University Press. Johnson, Graham E. 1971a From Rural Committee to Spirit Medium Cult: Voluntary Associations in the Development of a Chinese Town. Contributions to Asian Studies 1: (no. 1): 123-143. 1971b  Forthcoming  Natives, Migrants and Voluntary Associations in a Colonial Chinese Setting. Unpublished Ph.D. Dissertation, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. Voluntary Associations and Social Change: Some Theoretical Issues. International Journal of Comparative Sociology 16 (no. 1-2), 1975.  164  Johnson, Graham E., Wickberg E., and Willmott, W.E 1972 The Organizational Adaptation of Vancouver Chinese: A Research Proposal. Unpublished Manuscript, The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia. Kato, Shigeshi 1936 On the Hang or Association of Merchants in China with Especial Reference to the Institution in the T'ang and Sung Periods. Memoirs of the Research Department of the Tokyo Bunko 8: 45-83. Lai, Chuen-Yan 1972 The Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association in Victoria: Its Origins and Functions. B.C. Studies 15: 53-62. Lai, Vivien 1971  Leach, E.R. 1954  The New Chinese Immigrants in Toronto. In: Immigrant Groups, ed., J.L. E l l i o t t . Scarborough, Prentice-Hall of Canada Ltd, Political Systems of Highland Burma. Boston, Beacon Press.  Lee, Rose Hum 1960 The Chinese in the United States of America. The Hong Kong University Press.  Hong Kong,  Levy, Marion J. 1968 The Family Revolution in Modern China. New York, Atheneum. Lyman, Stanford M. 1962 The Oriental in North America. Lectures Produced by the Extension Division of the University of British Columbia in Cooperation with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, University of Victoria Library, Victoria, British Columbia. 1968  Contrasts in the Community Organization of Chinese and Japanese in North America. The Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology 5 (No. 2): 51-67.  Lyman, Stanford M., Willmott, W.E. and Ho, Berching 1964 Rules of a Chinese Secret Society in British Columbia. Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 27 (part 3): 530-539.  165  Middleton, John and Tait, David (eds.) 1958 Tribes Without Rulers. London, Routledge and Kegan Paul. Morgan, W.P. 1960  Triad Societies in Hong Kong. Hong Kong, Government Press.  Niida, Noboru 1950 The Industrial or Commercial Guilds of Peking and Religion and Fellowcountrymanship as Elements of their Coherence. Folklore Studies 9: 179-206. Parsons, Talcott 1968 The Structure of Social Action, Volume I. New York, The Free Press. Sedgwick, Charles P. 1973 The Context of Economic Change and Continuity in an Urban Overseas Chinese Community. Unpublished M.A. Thesis, The University of Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia. Schneider, David M. 1968 American Kinship: A Cultural Account. New Jersey, Prentice-Hall, Inc.  Englewood C l i f f s ,  Skinner, G. William 1958 Leadership and Power in the Chinese Community of Thailand. Ithaca, Cornell University Press. 1968  Overseas Chinese Leadership: Paradigm for a Paradox. In: Leadership and Authority, ed., G. Wijeyewardene. Singapore, University of Malaya Press.  Stanton, James B. and Prang, Margaret M. 1970 A History of the Chinese in Colonial British Columbia and Attitudes towards Them, 1858-1871. Unpublished paper, the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia. Sugimoto, Howard H. 1972 The Vancouver Riots of 1907: A Canadian Episode. In: East Across the Pacific, eds., H. Conroy and T.S. Miyakawa. Santa Barbara, American Bibliographic Center Press. Swartz, Marc J., Turner, Victor W. , and Tuden, Arthur 1966 Political Anthropology. Chicago, Aldine Publishing Co. T'ien, Ju-K'ang 1953 The Chinese of Sarawak: A Study of Social Structure. London, London School of Economics and P o l i t i c a l Science Monographs on Social Anthropology No. 12.  166  Topley, Marjorie 1967 The Emergence and Social Function of Chinese Religious Associations in Singapore. In: Immigrants and Associations, ed., L.A. Fallers. The Hague and Paris, Mouton. Wai, Hayne Yip 1970 The Chinese and Their Voluntary Associations i n British Columbia. Unpublished M.A. Thesis, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario. Wang, Gungwu 1970 Chinese Politics in Malaya.  The China Quarterly 43: 1-30.  Weiss, Melford S. 1971 Conflict and Promise: The Social Organization of a Chinese Community in America. Unpublished Ph.D. Dissertation, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan. Wells Fargo and Company 1882 Directory of Chinese Business Houses. San Francisco, Britton and Rey Lith. Willmott, Donald E. 1960 The Chinese of Semarang: a Changing Minority Community in Indonesia. Ithaca, Cornell University Press. Willmott, William E. 1964 Chinese Clan Associations i n Vancouver. 33-37.  Man LMIV (no. 49):  1966  The Chinese in Southeast Asia. 3): 252-262.  Australian Outlook 20 (no.  1969  Congregations and Associations: The P o l i t i c a l Structure of the Chinese Community i n Phnom-Penh, Cambodia. Comparative Studies in Society and History 11: 282-301.  1970a  The Political Structure of the Chinese Community i n Cambodia. London, The Athlone Press.  1970b  Approaches to the Study of the Chinese i n British Columbia. B.C. Studies 4: 38-51.  Wright, Mary C. 1971 Modern China i n Transition, 1900-1950. In: Modern China: An Interpretive Anthology, ed., J.R. Levenson. London, Macmillan.  167  Wynne, Robert E. 1964 Reaction to the Chinese in the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia, 1850-1910. Unpublished Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.  PERIODICALS AND NEWSPAPERS CONSULTED Chinatown News. The Chinese Times. Inside the Chinese Benevolent Association.  168  APPENDIX I Constitution and By-Laws of the Chinese Freemasons Society of Canada (1970), Article II, Objects and By-Law I, Membership Article II, Objects: (a)  To encourage and assist i t s members i n the practice of good c i t i zenship in the country wherein they reside;  (b)  To provide  (c)  To preserve the rites and rituals of old Chinese Freemasonry that may be of historical and cultural interest;  (d)  To preserve and cultivate Chinese culture, i t s arts and crafts, its culinary, i t s philosophy - e.g., i t s respect for family l i f e and the respect for elders, a l l this with a view to add to the Canadian mosaic cultural pattern;  suitable f a c i l i t i e s for and assistance to new citizens;  (e) To form committees, when needs be, to study p o l i t i c a l issues and form recommendations; (f)  To build a strong financial basis to better facilitate i t s cultural and welfare activities. To this end, i t shall be the aim of the Society to encourage mutual loans amongst members, to purchase, build or repair their various lodges or other affiliated properties and buildings. Detailed by-laws shall be passed to encourage and regulate such activities for the protection of the members.  (g)  To build effective publicity organs to promote i t s various cultural, educational and welfare activities. These organs shall: 1. Comply with the Society's aims of adopting the principle of the "Golden Mean" or the Middle Road on a l l issues, subjecting public affairs to just and balanced criticisms. 2. Comply with the aims and aspirations of the Canadian Government. 3. Research means of improving Chinese and Canadian welfare. 4. Discuss improving Canadian immigration regulations towards the Chinese. 5. To do research on improving Chinese Canadian productivity in their economic endeavours.  169  6. Research means of furthering Chinese Freemasons activities i n Canada. 7. Help members to take pride i n the image of the Society. 8. To create better understanding and communication between the Society and other Canadian organizations of good w i l l . (h)  Promote athletic activities amongst i t s members and non-members with a view to achieving a healthier nation. A l l lodges shall be encouraged to engage in such promotions.  (i)  Provide recreation and comfort for i t s members and the public and to this end, shall engage in providing rest homes, hotels, low rental housing and club f a c i l i t i e s , etc.  By-Law I, Membership: 1.  The members of the Society shall be subscribers to the Constitution and By-Laws and those persons admitted as members by the Board of Directors.  2.  Application for a membership to the Society shall be open to any Chinese residing legally in the Dominion of Canada, who shall be of good-imoral character and who shall be sponsored by two members of good standing. Under special circumstances, one sponsor may be acceptable, subjected to the decision of the Board of Directors.  3.  Application for a membership shall be submitted at least seven days in advance of the Initiation Ceremony and shall contain the name i n English and Chinese, address, age and occupation, place and date of birth, date of immigration into Canada (when applicable) marriage status, etc., and shall be sent to the Secretary of the Lodge accompanied by the i n i t i a l membership fee, and by him delivered to the Board of Directors for approval.  4.  Except in special circumstances determined by the Board of Directors, a new member is not eligible to hold office in the local lodge for the period of six months after initiation; nor is he eligible to hold office at Lodge Headquarters for a period of 3 years after initiation.  5.  Memberships are classified as Active and Special. Members upon payment of f u l l dues shall be designated "Active" members. Members delinquent in the payment of dues for 3 years shall become "Associate" members and may become Active members again upon the f u l l payment of a l l past dues.  170  Friends of the Society who are not of Chinese ancestry may be admitted as "Special" members with no voting rights but s i t in correspondence at meetings. Only "Active" members shall have the privilege of voting at a l l general meetings and elections of officers. Each member shall have one vote. Members who have shown special merit may be elected to the Dart Coon Sheah Auxiliary by a Special Board which is the senior inner group complementing and supporting a l l activities of the Chinese Freemasons, having i t s own charter and organization.  


Citation Scheme:


Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics



Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            async >
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:


Related Items