Topic 07. Challenges to traditional East Asian societies (1700 - 1868)

This section focuses on the challenges faced by both imperial China and Japan from the mid-18th Century to the mid-19th Century as they dealt with domestic economic, political and social strains and also challenges from the West who wanted to open up both countries for trade. Both countries were to respond to these challenges in very different ways and with very different consequences.

The section is currently under construction and we will be adding more pages during the next couple of months!

Specifically this section looks at:

  • the nature of Imperial China in the 18th Century: Emperor Qianlong and imperial decline
  • the Chinese tribute system and attempts by the West to open up China to trade
  • the causes and consequences of the First and Second Opium Wars
  • Taiping Rebellion
  • Japan under the Tokugawa Shogunate
  • he impact of Commodore Perry's expedition

1. The nature and structure of imperial rule under the Qing dynasty; Qianlong

The Qing dynasty, founded by the invading Manchus, was the last imperial dynasty of China; it was established in 1644 and ended in 1911 thus lasting for three centuries.

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