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  • Some Did It for Civilisation; Some Did It for Their Country

Some Did It for Civilisation; Some Did It for Their Country

A Revised View of the Boxer War

Jane E. Elliott

English , 2002/07 The Chinese University of Hong Kong Press

Tags: History

229 x 152 mm , 656pp ISBN : 978-962-996-066-7

  • US$23.00

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This book marks a total departure from previous studies of the Boxer War. It evaluates the way the war was perceived and portrayed at the time by the mass media. As such the book offers insights to a wider audience than that of sinologists or Chinese historians. The important distinction made by the author is between image makers and eyewitnesses. Whole categories of powerful image makers, both Chinese and foreign, never saw anything of the Boxer War but were responsible for disseminating images of that war to millions of people in China and throughout the world.

This crisis which shook the entire world in the summer of 1900 was a war not just a rebellion. The Boxer War was fought on three fronts by the soldiers of the Imperial Chinese Army, soldiers of the invading eight armies and the Boxer irregulars. Now, for the first time, a wealth of evidence is examined in order to provide an image of the soldiers of the Imperial Chinese Army.

Despite negative portraits from a minority of contemporary media and subsequent belittling myths which arose, the book concludes that the soldiers of the Imperial Chinese Army and their officers were true heroes of China.

Jane Elliott received her Ph.D. degree from the University of Adelaide in 1988. She is an independent scholar and has published in many fields including History of Anthropology, Economics and Law. At present she is writing a book on cartoons of the Boxer War. Her current interest is in the written and popular traditions concerning warfare in nineteenth century China as well as in particular wars between China and Western countries. She has been an Australian Research Council Fellow and an Australian Academy of the Social Sciences Exchange Fellow working in Beijing, Tianjin and Shandong.

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