The Nation-State is, today, dominant form of political and social order. However, there exist societies that are not accustomed to this type of governance. This paper tries to show how this kind of societies face up to social change brought by the power of Nation-State by taking an example of Xinping Yi and Dai Autonomous County, Yunnan. The paper focuses especially on cultural and social change after the Chinese Economic Reform. The paper proposes the concept of cultural reconstruction to understand cultural change in Xingping. In comparison with similar concepts like “invention of tradition” and “reflexive modernization ”, cultural reconstruction emphasizes the close link between economic development and cultural change. The ethnic minorities in Xingping are more or less subjected to economic development that the State promotes and have to reconstruct their cultural representation according to economic and political demand ; urban development implies the construction of monuments showing simplified official cultural representation of ethnic minorities ; a new type of dance is created for tourists. However this is not a simple submission to the State power. It is observed that they also preserve their own life style.