Author: Xintian Ma

Xintian Ma is from Guizhou province in Southwestern China. He is currently an MPhil student in Social Anthropological Research at the University of Cambridge. He recently graduated from the University of St Andrews with an undergraduate degree in International Relations and Social Anthropology. With research interests in politics, heritage, museums, religion and ethnicity, his MPhil dissertation focuses on the social life of Tibetan Buddhist Statues collected in Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

Double Identities: A Guanyin Statue in a Carriage Clock Case

When an object is misidentified, is it a ‘mistake’ or something more? Using a Guanyin statue as a case study, I suggest that objects can inhabit two identities when embodying two simultaneous social meanings.

Xintian Ma

13 June 2023

Connect with us

If you'd like to get involved, then please get in touch with us at

About the Museum

Museum of Archaeology & Anthropology
Downing Street
+44 (0)1223 333516

Visit the MAA Website
Search the Collections


Follow us


If you wish to donate online, then please go to the University of Cambridge campaign webpage.




Enter your email below to receive notifications when we post new Blog entries.

Data Protection: Your email address will be stored on our servers for no other purpose besides sending you ‘new post’ alerts. Your email will not be sent to any third party organizations. To unsubscribe please email: