The much maligned Qing Dynasty

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Ad Honorem
Dec 2015
4,754
Florania
Qing Dynasty had its fair share of issues:
Its censorship, close-door policy and reactionary rule resulted in backwardness of China.
The initial invasion brought unprecedented loss of lives and properties.
Its failure to full reform led to chaos and decline in China for more than a century (almost from the late reign under Aixinjueluo Hongli to formation of the People's Republic of China in 1949).
Yet it had a few merits as well:
It brought relative stability and prosperity to China for a century and more.
In spite of territorial losses of the late Qing, contemporary China inherited around 74% of the territories of the largest Qing extent. Honestly, most of the lost territories aren't exactly productive.
Are there other merits of the Qing Dynasty?
I prefer to look at historical period square and fair; on the Baidu history forum, if you speak favourably of the Qing Dynasty, you will called a 滿遺(literally, a former follower of the Qing Dynasty); if you speak against the Qing Dynasty, you will be called a 皇漢 (literally, a Han royalist or a Han supremacist).
 
Jun 2014
1,020
Earth
if you speak favourably of the Qing Dynasty, you will called a 滿遺(literally, a former follower of the Qing Dynasty); if you speak against the Qing Dynasty, you will be called a 皇漢 (literally, a Han royalist or a Han supremacist).
You can't please everyone in life.
 

Bart Dale

Ad Honorem
Dec 2009
7,095
I think the problem is that Qing were adversely being compared with Westerners (Western Europe and US), and compared to the West, their accomplishments fell short.

But if the Qing were compared to contemporary Middle East and India, the Qing were no worse, and possibly even better than those areas. The Qing might not have achieve universal literacy as in the West, but they were still a highly literate society. Corruption was probably no worse than you could find at times during the Ming, Han dynasty, or even ancient Rome.
 

heylouis

Ad Honorem
Apr 2013
6,627
China
manchu at one time period can somehow jump out the traditional methods on treating the others, more pragmatic.
 
Jun 2016
195
Hungary
the Kangxi and Qianlong era of Qing dynasty (also knows as "high Qing" actually is a prosperous and relatively stable period.

By the end of the 17th century, the Chinese economy had recovered from the devastation caused by the wars in which the Ming dynasty were overthrown, and the resulting breakdown of order.

In the following century, markets continued to expand as in the late Ming period, but with more trade between regions, a greater trade with overseas markets and a greatly increased population. After the re-opening of the southeast coast, which had been closed in the late 17th century, foreign trade was quickly re-established, and was expanding at 4% per annum throughout the latter part of the 18th century. China continued to export tea, silk and manufactures, creating a large, favorable trade balance with the West. The resulting inflow of silver expanded the money supply, facilitating the growth of competitive and stable markets

on top of that, The administration of the Grand Canal was made more efficient, and transport opened to private merchants.

although late Qing dynasty is coloured with instability and economic destruction, i dont think we should completely deny the achievement of the early Qing rulers.
 
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Lord Oda Nobunaga

Ad Honorem
Jan 2015
5,649
Ontario, Canada
I think that there are more a books about the Qing Dynasty published in English, Russian, French and German than any other Chinese dynasty. Food for thought.
 
Jul 2014
1,646
world
Qing is the true forefather of modern day China. The Qing dynasty defeated the Mongols and Tibetans. It was the general tso (of chicken fame)of Qing dynasty which brought xinjinag into China.
 

Sephiroth

Ad Honorem
Feb 2015
2,986
It is a Top Secret
Qing is the true forefather of modern day China. The Qing dynasty defeated the Mongols and Tibetans. It was the general tso (of chicken fame)of Qing dynasty which brought xinjinag into China.
The Qing dynasty defeated the Oirats (or the Dzungars to be more precise), Mongols were allied with Qing against Oirats.
 

Sephiroth

Ad Honorem
Feb 2015
2,986
It is a Top Secret
I think that there are more a books about the Qing Dynasty published in English, Russian, French and German than any other Chinese dynasty. Food for thought.
They are just best known, that makes them not any greater.
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And also some trivia. While the Qing would tell themselves they brought Han Chinese and non Han Chinese together, making them 'equally Chinese' or something, they had different ways of legitimization for different peoples. The Mongols for example regarded themselves part of Qing but never Chinese or part of China which was Khitad, part of Qing but not part of China. That was empty rhetoric basically. No one of the non Han people regarded themselves as Chinese probably ---- not even the Manchus themselves, who would heavily look down on typical buraucrats etc.

But what the Manchus did for Han is, they enabled them to spread and colonize Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, Manchuria etc. although this happened just in course of the long reign and was often indeliberate, they did not hinder Han people from migrating even if it was illegal, eventually they couldn't stop them. Yep only Mongolia is good preserved and Tibet was maybe.

This overwhelming Han majority in parts like Manchuria made the Roc or Prc way easier to claim or reclaim them. Of course this was completely out of greed they would want to take Manchuria etc. and nit only lands in China proper. After all they would first be like 'Han is true Chinese and Manchus are invaders' but later be like '5 races under one union' etc. complete arses.
 
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HackneyedScribe

Ad Honorem
Feb 2011
6,569
From heavenlykaghan's post as "counter-trivia":



this is a late Qing dynasty passport, and it clearly stated that people in the Qing empire were "Chinese subjects".



This passport also referred to the a specific Qing government position as the "Chinese board of foreign affairs" in 1910.




Qing passport in 1900 which described regions of Qing in these words: "Chinese Nanjing, Shangdong, Zhili, Mongolia".

While nation states were not formed in the early Qing, to say that it is modern Chinese who constructed the idea that Qing is a Chinese Empire is simply total nonsense and ignores all historical evidence. The idea that Qing and even the Yuan was Chinese can be found in late Qing dynasty textbooks dating to 1909. The idea that China had 4,000-5,000 years of history can also be found in textbooks like “Zhongguo dili jiaokeshu” (A text book of Chinese geography), written by Tu Ji in 1905. Textbooks in Tibetan and Manchu had similar ideas whereas the Tibetans were taught that they were related to the Chinese since the time of the yellow emperor and that their territory was part of the Yong prefecture during Da Yu's time. see: [FONT=ˎ̥]qing mo chuan zhen bianwu danan shiliao.[/FONT]
The constitution of 1909 specifically defined Qing nationals as Chinese. So lets not re-invent terminologies here, it is not academical or historical.
To imply that the Manchus did not actually believe this and was forced by the Han to coerce is just another baseless assumption not supported by historical evidence. The earliest proponent of a Chinese nation state including the Manchus were proposed by Manchu students studying abroad(namely Japan) and published newspapers known as Datong paper. The Manchu term for China is also Dulimbai gurun, and even in the Mongol sector of the banners, the term Dumdadu ulus(central country) was used to describe the country and the idea extended all the way to the local Manchus of Heilongjiang where Han Chinese were largely absent. Since most Chinese can't read Mongol, and many also can't read Manchu, these terms were certainly not created for the Han Chinese, they were Qing doctrines proposed by the Qing rulers and spread across the entire empire.
 
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