Relationship Between China And The West Essay

Relationship Between China And The West Essay

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The relationships between China and the West has been, throughout centuries, one of the most fluctuating due to the arrogance found on both sides. Emperor Qianlong states his relationship with Europe as ‘one-sided ' (Emperor Qianlong Mandate to King George III), based on how Qianlong boldly says that the west needed China 's products while china, itself, claimed that they already had everything. This was to say if it did not benefit China in any way or form requests for further trade or import/export was not instated or acted upon by the Emperor. Still, they did allow the trading of China 's manufactured goods, such as silk, tea, and porcelain, for silver (England and China: the Opium Wars, 1839-60 June 2006) at the city of Macao and of Canton, 145 km north of the former and established after the letter was sent. Qianlong was against Western influence in which he restricted trade to two places, had Europeans ethnically cut themselves off from their homelands and become ‘Chinese ' while also stopping the spread of western religion and culture. Reacting to their merchants being called ‘barbarians ', no representation of British authority allowed into the Chinese court, and the request of further trading with the east denied hardened the British 's attitude toward China. Great Britain did not respond well to the Emperor 's letter denying their advancement of trade into the east, which eventually led them to push opium, a new drug that the Chinese had not seen or heard of before, into the region creating the Opium War in 1839 (England and China: the Opium Wars, 1839-60). This can all be said to result from China 's isolation and exclusion from the rest of the world and also by the rise of corruption during the later years of Qianlong ...

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... into the region creating a war almost fifty years later. Yet despite the outcome and how Qianlong wrote the letter, it is a bold and a firm argument on how China did not want to be overrun by Western influence and the European nations. Backed with evidence and convincing reasons as to the Emperors refusal it is a testament to what kind of demands Britain desired, but also to how proud the Chinese government was through its sarcastic and prideful mood all throughout the letter. At the end of the letter, it is made very clear that if the advancement of trade would not benefit China in any way, then it is made sure that it would not be carried out. This manner of principle held by the Emperor and the increasing demands of England put each other at odds for the majority of history as this letter is evidence of this relationship 's ups and downs throughout the centuries.

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