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China from Empire to Republic: Missionary, Sinology, and Literary Periodicals is a collection of 17 English-language periodicals published in or about China during a period of over 130 years, extending from 1817 until the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949. This corresponds to the periods of the late Qing Dynasty and the Republican Era (1911–1949), when China experienced the radical and often traumatic transformation from an inward-looking imperial dynasty into a globally engaged republic.

Set within the context of such major historical events as the Opium Wars, the Taiping Rebellion, the Boxer Rebellion, the Revolution of 1911, the second Sino-Japanese War, and the Chinese Civil War, these periodicals illuminate the thoughts of Chinese intellectuals and Westerners, mainly missionaries, about China – and, more importantly, their efforts to understand and study Chinese history, culture, language, and literature.


This resource also features a significant collection of articles and photos on the founding and development of Christian higher education in China, including the establishment and growth into prominence of such institutions as Yenching University, the University of Nanking, Ginling College, Shandong Christian University, Soochow University, St. John’s University, Shanghai Baptist College, and the Canton Christian College.

Key facts:

•    Source libraries: National Library of China, Yale Divinity School Library, Oberlin College Library, and others

•    Date range: 1817-1949

•    Collection size: More than 150,000 pages

•    Cross-searchable on Gale Artemis: Primary Sources

The periodicals included in this collection can be categorised as follows:

1. Missionary journals, as represented by The Chinese Recorder and The West China Missionary News, two of the most famous missionary periodicals published in China before 1949.
2. Journals of Sinology, including pioneering sinology journal The China Review and its sequel, The New China Review. Many renowned sinologists of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, such as James Legge and Herbert Giles, contributed articles to these journals.
3. Academic and literary journals, such as the Bulletin of the Catholic University of Peking, The Yenching Journal of Social Studies, The China Critic, and T’ien Hsia Monthly. These literary journals were established and run by Chinese scholars and writers educated in the West.

Supports Research and Teaching In:

Nineteenth-century historyChinese history
Political scienceMissionary and religious studies
History of journalismCultural studies
Cross-cultural communicationEducational history

Related Resources from Gale include:

Nineteenth Century Collections Online: Asia and the West: Diplomacy and Cultural Exchange
Nineteenth Century Collections Online: Mapping the World: Maps and Travel Literature
Nineteenth Century Collections Online: Religion, Spirituality, Reform, and Society
19th Century UK Periodicals, Part 2: Empire: Travel and Anthropology, Economics, Missionary & Colonial

This collection is available on Gale Primary Sources

Gale Primary Sources provides a seamless research experience that enables scholars to search across millions of pages of primary and secondary sources in the humanities from the 15th to the 20th centuries.

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