February 1, 2013

Foochow Boat People : Foochow On Water (Tanka) People

 An interesting reading on the Tanka people of Asia brought me to some awareness of some 20th century studies.by researchers. Please note that many would find the word Tanka derogatory. to be politically correct  we refer to them as "on water people" sui shan ren jia.

These are sourced from Wikipedia :


  1. Anders Hansson (1996). Chinese outcasts: discrimination and emancipation in late imperial China. Volume 37 of Sinica Leidensia. BRILL. p. 117. ISBN 90-04-10596-4. Retrieved 2011-11-04. "Unless a change of surnames occurred for some unknown reason, or unless the ' water names' are not the real names of the Fujian boat people, it would seem that the Dan people (Tanke people)  lacked Chinese-style surnames at the time the Fujian branch" According to oral stories, people who live on boats do not have surnames.
  2. ^ Anders Hansson (1996). Chinese outcasts: discrimination and emancipation in late imperial China. Volume 37 of Sinica Leidensia. BRILL. p. 116. ISBN 90-04-10596-4. Retrieved 2011-11-04. "In a late Qing dynasty work which has a section on boat people that mainly refers to those in Fujian, common surnames are said to be Weng 翁 ('old fisherman'), Ou 歐, Chi 池 (pond), Pu 浦 (river bank), Jiang 江 (river) and Hai 海 (sea). None of those surnames is a very common one in China and a few are very rare."
  3. ^ Anders Hansson (1996). Chinese outcasts: discrimination and emancipation in late imperial China. Volume 37 of Sinica Leidensia. BRILL. p. 116. ISBN 90-04-10596-4. Retrieved 2011-11-04. "Some of them list the five names Mai 麥, Pu 濮, Wu 吴, Su 蘇 and He 何 The Huizhou prefectural gazetteer even states that there are no other boat people surnames, while others also add Gu 顧 and Zeng 曾 to make seven"

 Fuzhou Tanka (Fuzhou dialect: 曲蹄; Foochow Romanized: Kuóh-dà̤; Simplified Chinese: 福州疍民 Hók-ciŭ Dáng-mìng; 江妹仔 Gĕ̤ng-muói-giāng; 曲蹄婆 Kuóh-dà̤-bò̤), or Fuzhou Boat People, is an ethnic group in Fujian, China. A branch of the Tanka people, they traditionally lived on sampans in the lower course of Min River and the coast of Fuzhou in Fujian Province most of their lives and have been officially recognized as Han Chinese since 1955. (Source : Wikipedia)





I wonder if DNA tests are taken whether some of our Sibu Foochow people are related to the Tanka people. Many Sibu Foochows have Tie and Eu for surname, The surname He is found amongst the Heng Huas of Sibu. Zeng is however also a common Foochow surname.

I am not making any claims of knowledge about the Tanka People . It is my reading about the music of the Tanka people that brought me by accident to references to the Boat People of the Foochow regions.

Watch this space for future information!!


Note:
 http://www.cantonese.sheik.co.uk/phorum/read.php?1,105378,105537

 http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/4229618?uid=3738672&uid=2129&uid=2&uid=70&uid=4&sid=21101744291457

 http://www.chinahistoryforum.com/index.php?/topic/5223-

 http://www.fzda.gov.cn/tslmshow.asp?id=6049 (mentioned 方炳桂先生 - Foochow Folk lore expert)

What's the connection between Xian Singhai and the Sui Sang Ren Chia? 

9 comments:

Ann said...

The Henghuas are not this group? My Henghua friends confirms our stereo typing that they are very loud.

Sarawakiana@2 said...

No according to the articles, etc. Foochow Tanka..others are the Cantonese Tanka or Teochew Tanka. See the movie "Floating City" starring Aaron Kwok.

Anonymous said...

Maybe because the Henghua stay on boats in the waters that they always need to shout and therefore we called them ;loud which is true@@

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Vocal cords vary. Some are loud some are soft spoken. But may be your explanation is correct. However I do have third or fourth generation Foochow friends who do not need loudspeakers.

Naomi said...

I agreed that Henghua is loud and rough. They may sound like quarrel even when they are just having a chit chat. But foochow also loud with their "jin gu rong mo kan nyien nyi lo"

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Naomi, it is true about the Foochows. But I also know of many Heng Huas who are very soft spoken and extremely gentle and reserve too...This depends on their upbringing in other parts of the world.

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Anonymous said...

Does Fuzhou people from Sitiawan have Fuzhou Tanka ancestry?

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