The people of China are numerous. In fact, no other country in the world is home to more people. The estimated population of China is actually around 1.3 billion, with the highest population densities being found in the eastern part of the country. In relation to ethnic groups, the People’s Republic of China officially recognizes no less than 56. The largest of these groups–the Han People–constitute more than 90 per cent of the of the country’s total population and form what is also the largest single ethnic group on the planet.
The people of Tibet are widely considered to be one of the country’s most interesting ethnic groups. Predominantly Buddhists, they are especially known for their devout allegiance to their religion, their associated temples, their attachment to a traditional way of life, and their longstanding conflict with the Chinese Government. The conflict with the Chinese Government relates to the fact that Tibetans want to be independent, while China maintains that the Tibetan region is a part of China. In regards to tradition, Tibetans mostly depend on agriculture for their survival, as they have for centuries on end. As tourism continues to increase in the Tibetan region of China, however, more and more Tibetans are taking up other jobs, such as those that are associated with the hotel industry. The Tibetan region of China, it is worth clarifying, is found in the southwestern part of the country. The main province in which most Tibetans reside is the Xizang Province. This province also goes by the name of the Tibet Autonomous Region, and its capital is Lhasa. In Lhasa, you will find the Potala Palace, which is the most famous Tibetan landmark.
The Bai people, or the Baip, as they are also known, constitute one of the 56 different ethnic groups that are recognized by the People's Republic of China. Their total population is close to two million, and they are mostly found in the southern Yunnan Province's Dali area. Among other things, the Bai people are known for their high reverence of the color white, though it is not uncommon for their traditional costumes to be comprised of several different colors. In relation to religion, the Bai predominantly observe Buddhism and Animism, the latter of which encompasses the belief that souls and spirits are not only found in humans, but in everything that is part of the natural world. A fascinating group, the Bai are largely responsible for attracting tourists to Southern China. Their colorful festivals are among the main tourist draws.
Buddhist monks are among the most iconic people of China. Often dressed in red or orange-colored garments, they are also known for shaving their heads and for their extremely spiritual existence. The majority live in monasteries, such as the Songzanlin Monastery, and prefer to maintain a certain degree of separation from non-associated monks. The decision to become a Buddhist monk is entirely left up to the individual. Also worth highlighting is the fact that Chinese monks are traditionally associated with Kung Fu, or Chinese martial arts. This association is mostly linked with the Shaolin Monastery, which can be found in Henan Province and is widely known throughout the Western world.
Modern Chinese Fashion
In recent decades, China and the Chinese people in general have developed a closer relationship with the outside world. This is very much evidenced by modern Chinese fashion. It is very common to see people in China wearing ballcaps, Levi’s jeans, and other Western-style wear. As you might expect, the Chinese youth is especially fond of Western wear. This being said, it isn’t all about Western wear and foreign clothing styles in general. Many Chinese fashion designers are known to incorporate ancient trends in their designs. It is common for the modern Chinese designer to use certain traditional symbols, for example. Among the most commonly used symbols in modern Chinese fashion is the dragon and clouds image. This image, or symbol, used to be associated only with royalty.