China Awakened

China Awakened

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China Awakened

China Awakened

Read FREE!

Excerpt

Those who would understand the problems of Far Eastern countries and the perplexing features of their international relations need to realize and constantly remember that until recently Western Europe and Eastern Asia had almost no contact. They stood back to back, with insulating and isolating mountain ranges, deserts and seas between them. The cultures of the two regions developed quite independently each of the other. Moreover, the civilizations of the East were old before those of the West were new. It is not easy, but it is important, to grasp the full significance of the fact that the foundation and framework of Chinese life, even to-day, is a system of social, political and economic norms which was already mature when Athens and Sparta were in the making.

When in the course of time the Westerner brought his religion, his aggressive determination to trade, and his superior fighting equipment to the Far East, he came without invitation. Where he found himself opposed, he forced his way in. For the most part, he was as ignorant of the men of the East as were they of him; he was more intolerant of their manners and customs than they were of his; but he was above all utterly impatient of their calm confidence in the immutable superiority of their ancient institutions and methods.

Predictions of futility and folly notwithstanding, the West has tried to "hustle" the East--and, after periods of resistance, the nations of the East have one after another yielded to the pressure of Occidental influence and have quickened their steps.

China, the oldest, the largest, the most numerously populated, possessed of the most firmly rooted indigenous institutions, has naturally been one of the slowest among Far Eastern states in accepting the logic of the Occidental impact. It took a long time and hard knocks to persuade the Chinese that there was anything useful for them to learn from the . . .

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