Westerners in China

A History of Exploration and Trade, Ancient Times through the Present


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About the Book

Today the doors of China are opening to foreign investment and trade as never before, but the history of contact between China and the West goes back many centuries. Goods from China were being traded in Rome long before the birth of Christ, transported over the famous silk road that crossed Mongolia and Russia. But not until the mid-fifteenth century, when Marco Polo published his account of his travels, did China really capture the European imagination. Subsequent centuries saw missionary trips to China by Franciscans and Jesuits, a European craze for Chinese silk and porcelain, European visits to Tibet, the infamous Opium War between Britain and China, and further instances of contact, commerce, and conflict. China has shown amazing economic growth since 1949, and today it has set ambitious goals for growth in trade and technology.
This book traces the history of Western exploration in and trade with China. It follows the events outlined above and touches on many other highlights, including exploration by the Russian Nikolay Przhevalsky, who traveled deep into China and today is largely remembered for the horse he discovered and identified there; the travels of nineteenth-century women explorers in China; American Roy Chapman’s discovery of the first fossilized dinosaur eggs in the Gobi Desert; and the competition between two American explorers to be the first to capture a live panda. Also included are a chronology of Chinese history and a pronunciation guide.

About the Author(s)

Foster Stockwell is a publishing consultant for Chinese publishers and authors. He lives in Des Moines, Washington.

Bibliographic Details

Foster Stockwell
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 232
Bibliographic Info: photos, maps, appendices, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2003
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1404-8
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8189-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface     1

1 Some Basic Facts About China     3
2 Those Who Came by Three Silk Roads     13
3 China’s First Contacts with the West     22
4 The Legacy of Marco Polo     32
5 Jesuits in China     42
6 Prized Goods from China     52
7 Early Western Exploration in Tibet and Yunnan     63
8 Aftermath of the Opium War     74
9 Americans and the China Trade     86
10 Role of Missionaries in Exploration, Trade, and Culture in China     95
11 Przhevalsky: The Man and the Horse     105
12 Distaff Explorers     114
13 The Last Imperialist     123
14 Cities Buried in Sand     132
15 Rocks and Culture     141
16 An American Dinosaur Hunter     150
17 The Giant Panda Argument     160
18 The Communist Revolution     170
19 The New Zealander Who Won the Hearts of the Chinese     180
20 Rapid Growth of China’s Economy     191
21 Illusion and Reality     203

Appendix 1: Chronology of Chinese History     213
Appendix 2: Other China Explorers of Note     215
Bibliography     219
Index     223

Book Reviews & Awards

“fascinating…recommended…all levels and collections”—Choice.