The Opium War and Great Britain's Influences In China

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While westerners in China pushed to claim rights and generally oppose Chinese reformers who worked to better China, the Chinese government and society continued to face internal problems. While westerners in China pushed to claim rights and generally oppose Chinese reformers who worked to better China, Chinese government and society faced internal problems. Being a main target for imperialism, China faced much western influence. One of the events that marked the beginning of intense western influence was the case concerning the Opium Wars. A main imperialistic power, Great Britain, began trading China opium, a heavily addictive drug, in exchange for tea and silk. At first, it seemed like a positive idea – the Chinese previously used opium for medicinal purposes. With little time, the government began to realize to the greatest extent the deterioration opium caused and how they must be wary of Great Britain. In an attempt to delete Great Britain’s influence, the Chinese began attacking British cargo ships. Thus began the Opium War and Great Britain’s evident influences in China. A result of the Opium War that edged westerners to penetrate China further was the creation of the unequal and unfair treaties, the Treaty of Nanjing and the Treaty of Tientsin. Most of the rights sought out of both treaties are very similar, being opening ports to western countries, the right to open numerous trade routes, and paying indemnities. However, the most important facet is the establishment of extraterritoriality. Extraterritoriality is the case where if a foreigner breaks the law or creates an offense, he is tried in his home country. This is unfair because the offender will obtain an advantage in his home country; their court wi... ... middle of paper ... ...mperialism. 26 February 2010 http://www.essortment.com/all/imperialismwest_ridb.htm. Galduroz, Michael, Satou, Yuki, and Busetto, Alex. “Sun Yat Sen (1866-1925)”. Movers & Shakers. 25 February 2010 http://library.thinkquest.org/26469/movers-and-shakers/sun.html Caswell, Thomas. “Opium Wars”. China. 26 February 2010 http://regentsprep.org/Regents/global/themes/imperialism/china.cfm Buschini, J. “Spheres of Influence”. The Boxer Rebellion. 24 February 2010 http://www.smplanet.com/imperialism/fists.html Wong, K.C and Yuen, K.K. “Except for Dr. Sun Yat Sen’s Tung Meng Hui, Discuss the role of the different groups in the 1911 Revolution.”. Reforms and Revolution. 24 February 2010 http://www.thecorner.org/hist/essays/china/socialgroups.htm Hooker, Richard. “The 1911 Revolution”. Modern China. 24 February 2010 http://www.wsu.edu/~dee/MODCHINA/REV.HTM
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