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postgraduate thesis: Cultural incentives behind the failure of internalization of international law in the late Qing dynasty : a case study of the Boxer Rebellion

TitleCultural incentives behind the failure of internalization of international law in the late Qing dynasty : a case study of the Boxer Rebellion
Authors
Advisors
Advisor(s):Fu, HCarty, JA
Issue Date2019
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Tan, J. [譚婧]. (2019). Cultural incentives behind the failure of internalization of international law in the late Qing dynasty : a case study of the Boxer Rebellion. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.
AbstractThe Boxer Rebellion happened at the end of the 19th century. The Qing court used the force of the Boxers to attack foreign embassies in Beijing, and many missionaries were murdered in the north of China. Missionary conflicts and foreign influence on the Chinese government appeared to be the reasons for the rebellion. However, the fundamental reason was that the European treaty system damaged Chinese economic and political system, the Confucian mechanism. In Chinese history, private property was bonded with relationships and was distributed through family relationship system. Property and human resources were both controlled by Chinese rulers. Based on this nature, Confucian relationships and rites were developed to maintain the imperial power system of China. This mechanism functioned well until treaties were introduced in, especially at the end of the 19th century. The influence of international relations and treaty system accumulated for over half a century before the breakout of the Boxer Rebellion. The Qing court tried to maintain its hierarchical tributary system in its relations with European countries, whereas European countries ignored the Qing court’s concern and required equal status with China. However, sixty years of modern international relations between China and the west were not long enough to change the Chinese mindset that had been taught by Confucian classics for over 2,000 years. Three series of events and treaties led to three reforms in the Qing court. Contrary to westerners’ expectations, the Qing government was only mending the Confucian political system that was damaged by the treaty system. Political westernization was never in the goals of these reforms. Instead, the Qing court wanted to use western techniques to strengthen itself to resist western influence and keep the reign over China in the hands of Qing rulers. The Boxer Rebellion happened during the confrontation of the Confucian mechanism and the treaty system. The Qing court imagined that once foreigners were gone, threats to Qing rulers’ reign would also disappear. The actions of the most important Chinese diplomat, Li Hongzhang, in dealing with the Boxer Rebellion demonstrated the working philosophy of Confucian mechanism in cultivating Chinese mindset and the effect of personal relationships in the negotiation of the Boxer Protocol.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectInternational law - China - History
Dept/ProgramLaw
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/274653

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.advisorFu, H-
dc.contributor.advisorCarty, JA-
dc.contributor.authorTan, Jing-
dc.contributor.author譚婧-
dc.date.accessioned2019-09-09T07:21:25Z-
dc.date.available2019-09-09T07:21:25Z-
dc.date.issued2019-
dc.identifier.citationTan, J. [譚婧]. (2019). Cultural incentives behind the failure of internalization of international law in the late Qing dynasty : a case study of the Boxer Rebellion. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/274653-
dc.description.abstractThe Boxer Rebellion happened at the end of the 19th century. The Qing court used the force of the Boxers to attack foreign embassies in Beijing, and many missionaries were murdered in the north of China. Missionary conflicts and foreign influence on the Chinese government appeared to be the reasons for the rebellion. However, the fundamental reason was that the European treaty system damaged Chinese economic and political system, the Confucian mechanism. In Chinese history, private property was bonded with relationships and was distributed through family relationship system. Property and human resources were both controlled by Chinese rulers. Based on this nature, Confucian relationships and rites were developed to maintain the imperial power system of China. This mechanism functioned well until treaties were introduced in, especially at the end of the 19th century. The influence of international relations and treaty system accumulated for over half a century before the breakout of the Boxer Rebellion. The Qing court tried to maintain its hierarchical tributary system in its relations with European countries, whereas European countries ignored the Qing court’s concern and required equal status with China. However, sixty years of modern international relations between China and the west were not long enough to change the Chinese mindset that had been taught by Confucian classics for over 2,000 years. Three series of events and treaties led to three reforms in the Qing court. Contrary to westerners’ expectations, the Qing government was only mending the Confucian political system that was damaged by the treaty system. Political westernization was never in the goals of these reforms. Instead, the Qing court wanted to use western techniques to strengthen itself to resist western influence and keep the reign over China in the hands of Qing rulers. The Boxer Rebellion happened during the confrontation of the Confucian mechanism and the treaty system. The Qing court imagined that once foreigners were gone, threats to Qing rulers’ reign would also disappear. The actions of the most important Chinese diplomat, Li Hongzhang, in dealing with the Boxer Rebellion demonstrated the working philosophy of Confucian mechanism in cultivating Chinese mindset and the effect of personal relationships in the negotiation of the Boxer Protocol.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.-
dc.subject.lcshInternational law - China - History-
dc.titleCultural incentives behind the failure of internalization of international law in the late Qing dynasty : a case study of the Boxer Rebellion-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineLaw-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.date.hkucongregation2019-
dc.identifier.mmsid991044138427303414-

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