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Title: Robert Hart's relationship with the late Qing bureaucracy
Author: Chih-Hui, Tsai
ISNI:       0000 0004 6056 7906
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis focuses on Sir Robert Hart's relationship with the Qing bureaucracy in the late Qing period. Hart's relationship with Chinese officials was essential to his work as Inspector General of the Chinese Imperial Maritime Customs. The thesis argues that as Inspector General, Hart took on a role as a ‘man in the middle’ between China and the West. Hart’s service in the Chinese government (1859-1908) covered almost the entire period from China's humiliating 1860 defeat in the Second Opium War until the collapse of the imperial state in 1911 Throughout this period Harts role in the Customs Service put him at the centre of China’s foreign relations, attempting to balance European pressure and China's interests. Hart's achievements in establishing an efficient Customs Service benefiting both China and Europe represented one approach to the problem of how China should respond to increased European influence in East Asia Hart did not simply stick obstinately to British blueprints for reform in China Instead he also fused the ideas of Qing intellectuals and the Self-Strengthening movement into the British model to develop his own approach to modernisation in China Meanwhile, Chinese reformers were developing other approaches to resolving the key problem of China's growing weakness relative to the West When Hart attempted to promote reform of the Chinese Navy with himself as a new national naval Inspector-General. Chinese officials ensured that Hart did not succeed in securing a position of such far-reaching influence Primary sources used include Hart s diaries and letters, and Chinese official documents and memoranda
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available