!!> PDF ✯ The Scramble for China, 1839-1949 (Allen Lane History) ⚣ Author Robert Bickers – Rvtrek.info

The Scramble for China, 1839-1949 (Allen Lane History) Fascinating subject matter but I thought this book was just a gloss over I didn t like the author s writing style either Disjointed and opinionated Major events like the Boxer Rebellion or the downfall of the Qing Dynasty get covered in a page or two O I really was looking forward to this one But unfortunately another one of those instances where the writing style is just too dry for me Seems well researched and all that, but I struggled a bit to finish. In The Early Nineteenth Century China Remained Almost Untouched By British And European Powers But As New Technology Started To Change This Balance, Foreigners Gathered Like Wolves Around The Weakening Qing Empire Would The Chinese Suffer The Fate Of Much Of The Rest Of The World, Carved Into Pieces By Europeans Or Could They Adapt Rapidly Enough To Maintain Their Independence This Important And Compelling Book Explains The Roots Of China S Complex Relationship With The West By Illuminating A Dramatic, Colourful And Sometimes Shocking Period Of The Country S History. Although China is indisputably today among the world s greatest powers diplomatically, economically, and militarily many Westerners are unaware of what an incredible transformation this represents in less than 70 years China s long civil war, most of it waged at the same time that China was also fighting to repel Japanese invaders, ended in 1949 with the defeat of Chiang Kai Shek s Nationalist forces But it was a poor nation, its people and resources exhausted from decades of war It was also still largely a rural, agriculture oriented society Under the leadership of the Communist Party, and aided in the early years by the Soviet Union under Stalin, China began to rapidly industrialize and urbanize, achieving the kind of makeover in mere decades that took most other nations a century If we are to understand China s deep reservations about Western and US motives and intentions we must be mindful of the two centuries of interactions between China and the West before our present time China is a very ancient society with around 5,000 years of history, and her memory runs deep Two excellent books by Robert Bickers that cover the often unhappy relations between China and the West from the early 19th century to the present day are The Scramble for China Foreign Devils in the Qing Empire, and Out of China How the Chinese End Thorough and detailed, this book presents a comprehensive account of Western British intrusion into, and involvement with, the self styled treaty port world of China It is balanced in its assessment of the Westerners treatment of Chinese and the Chinese state, taking into account that the same period was one of imperialism, and one of European domination across the world Even so, it does not attempt to absolve the Europeans of the injustices they pepertrated against the C Horrible and unfocused It simple cares too much about the wrong topics to be useful A good book covering the Western power s actions commercial, political, and military in China in the 19th and early 20th centuries A fairly balanced chronological narrative, looking at the combination of misunderstandings and righteous actions which permeated both sides The book does a good job of providing both Chinese and Good but tough going If you know something about China s history from the mid19th century to 1914, this is illuminating, impeccably researched and at times fascinating account of the lives and history of the foreign devils It is, due to its focus, light on the internal conflicts and struggles which tore at the Qing imperial structure du I am not going to lie here, reading the first two chapters was really dry, in fact I cannot even remember what I read in that Sure they had some interesting things but they were written pretty boringly Not to mention that I sometimes had to wonder at the sentence structure and I am sure it could have used a few commas here and there I had to reread a few sentences to understand what they meant because they were so long.However the third chapter started a bit interesting and it was in my eyes an upward trend from there I liked the information on the Qing and how they were and stayed quintessential Manchus and had not been thoroughly sinicizedas some still assume to explain how their tiny elite could keep control for 250 years Also apparently the 1st Opium War was not simple fought because of trade but also because of honor At first I had my problems believing that, but then I realized that tons of people have started bloody conflicts because of their notions of honor, which is often synonymous with prestige In fact according to the book Modern History of Hong Kong it was indeed fought between Britain and China over their conflicting viewpoints on diplomatic relations, trade, and the Robert Bickers is without doubt the foremost historian currently working on the history of China s treaty ports This book is very much his attempt at a grand narrative within that frame, and its attempt at balance is perhaps best summed up in the jacket blurb that this was a clash of two equally arrogant and scornful cultures The history which Bickers narrates and reflects upon goes well beyond the subtitle s cut off year of 1914, as he discusses the contemporary relevance of much that happened within China s century of national humiliation which is still very much of relevance today Bickers essential argument is that the way this history is currently being read is of contemporary importance to China than it is to the West, something which we could do well to redress in our own reflections on the here and now of such shared history in terms of its influence on the present and potentially the future too Empire Made Me An Englishman Adrift in Shanghai was a tour de force in demonstrating how micro


About the Author: Robert Bickers

Robert Bickers is Professor of History and Director of the Historical Photographs of China project at the University of Bristol.


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