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(self-designation, puchuang, pupu, pui, or punung), a people in the People’s Republic of China, mainly in the Kwangsi Chuang Autonomous Region. According to a 1975 estimate, the Chuang number approximately 10 million. Their language is one of the Thai languages. The predominant religion is animism, but Taoism is also widespread.
The Chuang are one of the most ancient peoples of South China; their ancestors created the ancient state of Nanyiieh, which existed from 207 B.C to 111 B.C. The Chuang took part in the Taiping Rebellion of 1850–64. Between 1927 and 1937 they helped establish a number of soviet regions in China in the area between the Tso Chiang and the Yu Chiang. They also aided in the formation of the Seventh and Eighth Red Armies.
For centuries the primary occupation of the Chuang has been farming, especially the cultivation of rice; part of the population, however, is now engaged in heavy industry. The Chuang have their own system of writing; in medieval times it was hieroglyphic, but in 1958 they adopted the Latin alphabet. The Chuang have a rich national literature.
REFERENCESNarody Vostochnoi Azii. Moscow-Leningrad, 1965.
Its, R. F. Etnicheskaia istoriia iuga Vostochnoi Azii. Leningrad, 1972.