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Western Books on China published up to 1850


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Hrsg. v. John Lust


Inhalt :: Content

Sammlung von über 650 Werken über das China der Kaiserzeit, die bis zum Jahr 1850 im europäischen Raum erschienenen sind. Die Werke legen Zeugnis ab von der Wahrnehmung Chinas in den zeitgenössischen europäischen Gesellschaften. Der Titelauswahl liegt das von John Lust herausgegebene Bestandsverzeichnis "Western Books on China published up to 1850 in the Library of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London" zugrunde.

Western Books on China published up to 1850

Verlag :: Publisher

Brill Academic Publishers

Preis :: Price

Preise auf Anfrage / Prices on request

Das Angebot richtet sich nicht an Verbraucher i. S. d. § 13 BGB und Letztverbraucher i. S. d. PAngV.



Bestellnummer bei digento :: digento order number


Verlagsinformation :: Publisher's information

The new online collection "Western Books on China published up to 1850" offers advanced research tools, such as MARC applications for the bibliographical material. Sources are now ranged by subject (60 different topics) and all texts are fully searchable and readable.

The online collection is based on an annotated bibliography by John Lust, former Head of the Chinese Department of the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, of all early Western books on China housed at SOAS. Titles are listed by subject, with author, title, supplementary subject and Chinese title indexes. Texts are in English and a variety of European languages.

As John Lust says in his introduction to his book Western Books on China published up to 1850 ..., the material in this collection is becoming harder to find the further the period in which it was produced recedes from us. This literature covers the first great period of Western contact with China, and ranges from accounts by medieval travellers and delegations to the first stages of the European attempts to bring China into the world market and to gain, if necessary by force, a foothold in the south and ultimately in the capital.

The material contains, in the first place, an abundance of observations and hearsay, running the gamut from the valuable and the credible to sheer fantasy and invention. The enthusiastic exaggerations of foreign visitors often have to be tempered by comparison with sober reports in Chinese sources, such as local gazetteers and memoires.

Secondly, there is material testifying to the formidable difficulties encountered by Westerners attempting to impose on Chinese matters their own familiar historical, linguistic, religious, and other categories, which themselves were undergoing transformations in this period.

Thirdly, there is the material arising from the activities of Westerners in direct contact with China, the embassies and so on, and by the unofficial intermediaries between China and the West, the traders and missionaries. This group has much in common with the second one, because a great deal of the interpretation of China is even more important as an interpretation of the Western scene itself. A striking general example of this kind of case is the remarkable shift in attitude to China that occurred in the 1830s and 1840s. In many items in this collection, one can observe the notions of benevolent and philosophical despotism and the illusory idylls of eighteenth century Chinoiserie being replaced by contempt for things Chinese and by strident attitudes of superiority in military, ethical, political, and other respects.

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