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Western missionaries in China. The reason why western missionaries became the carrier of Chinese - Essay Example

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The West, who believed they had the right to a permanent diplomatic presence in China, forced the Chinese to submit to their demands following the bitter conflict of 1860.I do not wonder that the Chinese hate the foreigner. The foreigner is frequently severe and exacting in this Empire which is not his own…
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Western missionaries in China. The reason why western missionaries became the carrier of Chinese
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Western missionaries in China. The reason why western missionaries became the carrier of Chinese

Download file to see previous pages... The West, who believed they had the right to a permanent diplomatic presence in China, forced the Chinese to submit to their demands following the bitter conflict of 1860.I do not wonder that the Chinese hate the foreigner. The foreigner is frequently severe and exacting in this Empire which is not his own. He often treats the Chinese as though they were dogs and had no rights whatever -- no wonder that they growl and sometimes bite" (Quote by Sarah Pike Conger in, The Boxer Rebellion: The Dramatic Story of China's War on Foreigners That Shook the World in the Summer of 1900. p.3, 2000).The West, who believed they had the right to a permanent diplomatic presence in China, forced the Chinese to submit to their demands following the bitter conflict of 1860. The war, which finished with the flight of the Emperor, who took refuge beyond the Great Wall together with members of the royal court, left a China that was torn a part. The British and French armies marched on Peking, on a pilgrimage of destruction, and many historic buildings, including the beautiful Summer Palace, were looted and burnt under the command of Lord Elgin. This is just one example of the inglorious events, concerning Western deportment and relations with China, which characterized the nineteenth century.On June 25th 1865, J. Hudson Taylor went down on his knees upon the beach at Brighton, in England, and "prayed for twenty-four willing, skillful laborers to reach the inland provinces of China" (OMF.org, Online Article, 2007). Today, the Oversees Missionary Fellowship that Hudson founded is a diverse evangelical mission society, with more than 1,300 missionaries, from 30 different nations.
This essay will be considering the distinctive functions of Western missionaries in nineteenth century China, and the reason why they became the carriers of the Chinese people. Through the examination of China's history, including the Opium war and the Boxer Rebellion, this paper will determine the influence of Western missionaries upon Chinese culture, and how this affected China and her people.

A Global View of China's History With The West
Portuguese merchants and Catholic missionaries, who arrived in China during the late sixteenth century, were the first important cultural meetings between China and Europe. And it was through such missionaries, and their converts, that Christianity was introduced into mainland China throughout the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. However, due to the fear of Catholic influence among the Chinese imperial rulers, Christianity was banned in China from 1724-1860. Throughout this period, therefore, missionary efforts were concentrated on other Southeast Asian countries, as the missionaries waited for China to reopen its boarders to foreigners (High Beam Encyclopaedia, Online Article, 2007).
The rot had already begun before Britain defeated China in the Opium War (1840-1842), which concluded with her having to concede Hong Kong Island. Foreign powers, who were greedily wanting cargoes of silk, tea, and the ginseng that the Chinese believed to be a powerful healer, had coerced China into opening her doors to foreign trade. Initially, these products were bought through the profits of "foreign mud" - opium, but as China's weaknesses became increasing apparent, she was forced into making additional territorial concessions. The port of Tientsin, which is situated at the mouth of the Peiho River and approximately eighty miles from Peking, was opened to international trade, and Shanghai became a flourishing foreign settlement.
However, by the end of the century, the foreign powers were vying with each other for concessions in a type of "imperial feeding frenzy" (Diana Preston, The Boxer Rebellion, p.12, 2000), and each of them managed to wrest control over the bordering countries that were seen as being vital to foreign trade. Nominally self-ruling, each of these countries recognized China as their effective overseer and sent acknowledgment of this ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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