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Beyond the Steppe FrontierA History of the Sino-Russian Border$
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Sören Urbansky

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780691181684

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691181684.001.0001

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(p.266) Conclusion
Beyond the Steppe Frontier

Sören Urbansky

Princeton University Press

This concluding chapter reveals that, despite a proliferation of cross-border human mobility in the post-Cold War era that largely stems from tourism and trade (and is not to be confused with immigration) there continues to be a considerable indifference and prejudice on both sides. Even today not every visitor and border resident commutes freely back and forth between the two Argun banks, as the Cossacks and nomads did one hundred years ago. Absent an economic interest and still suspicious about the alien neighbor, many people would simply rather stay at home. The psychological alienation on a personal level, regardless of the close physical proximity, derives from decades of military confrontation, population exchange, and two very different systems of values and beliefs formed in the schools and by the media of two closed but very distinct countries. These legacies will have a lasting impact on the future of the border region, no matter how diplomatic relations, bilateral trade balances, or border management policies between China and Russia develop in the years to come.

Keywords:   cross-border human mobility, post-Cold War era, cross-border tourism, cross-border trade, psychological alienation, diplomatic relations, bilateral trade, border management policies

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