Published Date

January 1, 2004

From Imperialism: European, American, and Japanese


Question Three

How did China’s elite view imperialism? From what perspectives did they view the causes of imperialism? What strategies were proposed to eliminate foreign domination?

Sources for Question Three

John P. McKay, et al. A History of World Societies; 5th ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1999, pp. 844-46, 871-72, 952-56, 970-80.

China in the Warring States Period, 403-221 B.C.:

Manchu/Qing (Ch’ing) China:

Terms, Concepts, People

Define and identify the following:

  1. Lin Tse-hsu (Lin Zexu)6. Chiang Kai-shek (Jiang Jieshi)
  2. Opium War (1839-42)7. Revolution of 1911
  3. Guangxu Emperor8. May Fourth Movement (1919)
  4. Reform Movement of 18989. Mao Tse-tung (Mao Zedong)
  5. Sun Yat-sen (Sun Zhongshan)10. Hu Shih (Hu Shi)

Study Questions:

  1. How did China’s elite propose to deal with the industrial nations in the 19th century?
  2. How did reformers and revolutionaries attempt to handle the foreign threat in the early 20th century?
  3. How did Chinese nationalism develop after the May Fourth Movement?

Chinese Opponents of Imperialism

Qian Long (Ch’ien Lung) Emperor. “Letter to King George III of Great Britain.” (1793).

Jiang Tingfu (T. F. Chiang), “China and European Expansion,” Politica, 2.5 (March, 1936).

Lin Zexu (Lin Tse-hsu), Imperial Commissioner. “Letter to Queen Victoria.” (1839).

Zung Huashi. “Yapian Zhanzheng” (The Opium War). Beijing: China Books, 1972.

Political cartoon #1: “The people of Sanyuanli thrashing the invading English army.”

Political cartoon #2: [The people] of Humen destroying opium.”

Hu Sheng. “Establishment of New Relationships,” chapter one of Imperialism and Chinese Politics. Beijing: Foreign Languages Press, 1965.

Guangxu (Kwang Hsu) Emperor. “Reform Edict of 1898”

Mao Zedong (Mao Tse-tung). “The May Fourth Movement.” In Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung (Mao Zedong), II, 237-239; 5 vols. Beijing: Foreign Languages Press, 1975.

Chiang K’ai-shek (Jiang Jieshi). “The Origins of National Humiliation and the Sources of the Revolution,” chapter two of China’s Destiny. New York: Roy Publishers, 1947.

Hu Sheng. “Revolution and Counter Revolution, (section 3, “Battle Standard Against Imperialism”),” chapter six of Imperialism and Chinese Politics.

Hu Shih (Hu Shi). “Types of Cultural Response,” chapter one of The Chinese Renaissance. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1934.

Next section: Suggestions for Further Reading and Viewing