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Loss of a Recorded Heritage: Destruction of Chinese Books in the Peking Siege of 1900

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Title: Loss of a Recorded Heritage: Destruction of Chinese Books in the Peking Siege of 1900
Author(s): Huanwen, Chen; Davis, Donald G., Jr.
Subject(s): Libraries and society Libraries in China Peking Seige
Abstract: Late-nineteenth-century China suffered from a weak and declining central government, the incursions of Western interests, and a necessity to grapple with the demands of a modern national state. For sixty days in the summer of 1900 the legation quarters of Western governments in Peking came under siege by the Qing government and Boxer forces until finally relieved by an international military expedition. During the siege, the Hanlin Academy, a repository of Chinese bibliographical treasures representing centuries of cultural accumulation, suffered destruction through fire and pillage. From the immediate aftermath of the siege and throughout the century following, questions have been raised as to what actually happened and who was to blame for the atrocity. The observations of the British and other Western government officials differed from those of the Chinese participants. A variety of sources, some recently rediscovered, make fresh conclusions possible.
Issue Date: 2007
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Citation Info: In Library Trends 55 (3) Winter 2007: 431–441.
Genre: Article
Type: Text
Language: English
ISSN: 0024-2594
Publication Status: published or submitted for publication
Rights Information: Copyright 2007 Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Date Available in IDEALS: 2008-02-28

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