Chapter

Introduction

Frank Dikötter

in The Age of Openness

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print July 2008 | ISBN: 9789622099203
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9789882206595 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5790/hongkong/9789622099203.003.0001
Introduction

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This book uses a variety of primary sources and a highly informative body of secondary literature to challenge the view that modern China was mainly defined by “warlords”, “imperialism”, or “disintegration”: it suggests instead that in many respects it might very well be qualified as a golden age of engagement with the world. The point of this book is not to provide exhaustive evidence for this view, but to avoid bland consensus, provoke critical thought, and encourage readers to think creatively: in many cases footnotes refer to detailed research monographs which offer much fuller arguments, while future avenues for research are opened up in all chapters. An overview of the chapters included in this book is given. Communism and, ironically, nationalism have seen openness as a cause of decline in republican China.

Keywords: modern China; republican China; communism; nationalism; openness; imperialism; disintegration; warlords

Chapter.  1965 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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