From a Confucian Literati to a Military General: Li Hung Chang’s Views of Western Technology (1885-1896)

  •  Haixia Wang    


This paper focuses on Li Hung Chang (1823-1901)’s visit to England and America in 1896, to rethink and revaluate the importat role Li played at that historical time. Li Hung Chang toured Europe and America in 1896 as an imperial envoy of the first rank. Although some aspects of Li’s career and evaluation have been given monographic treatment, there is yet little study on his comments on his attitudes toward Western science and technology. This paper augues that if modernization is a matter of modern state power as an army, navy, or diplomatic corps, then Li was certainly a modernizer. But if modernization is a deeper process of organizational and institutional change, Li was not a determined modernizer. In fact, Li relied heavily on patronage even when he could exercise legitimate political power, in order to adovocate Self-Strengthening Movement.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1916-9655
  • ISSN(Online): 1916-9663
  • Started: 2009
  • Frequency: semiannual

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