The Manchu Way: The Eight Banners and Ethnic Identity in Late Imperial China
Stanford University Press, 2001 - 580 pagina's
In 1644, the Manchus, a relatively unknown people inhabiting China s rude northeastern frontier, overthrew the Ming, Asia s mightiest rulers, and established the Qing dynasty, which endured to 1912. From this event arises one of Chinese history s great conundrums: How did a barely literate alien people manage to remain in power for nearly 300 years over a highly cultured population that was vastly superior in number? This problem has fascinated scholars for almost a century, but until now no one has approached the question from the Manchu point of view.
This book, the first in any language to be based mainly on Manchu documents, supplies a radically new perspective on the formative period of the modern Chinese nation. Drawing on recent critical notions of ethnicity, the author explores the evolution of the "Eight Banners, a unique Manchu system of social and military organization that was instrumental in the conquest of the Ming.
The author argues that as rulers of China the Manchu conquerors had to behave like Confucian monarchs, but that as a non-Han minority they faced other, more complex considerations as well. Their power derived not only from the acceptance of orthodox Chinese notions of legitimacy, but also, the author suggests, from Manchu "ethnic sovereignty, which depended on the sustained coherence of the conquerors.
When, in the early 1700s, this coherence was threatened by rapid acculturation and the prospective loss of Manchu distinctiveness, the Qing court, always insecure, desperately urged its minions to uphold the traditions of an idealized "Manchu Way. However, the author shows that it was not this appeal but rather the articulation of a broader identity grounded in the realities of Eight Banner life that succeeded in preserving Manchu ethnicity, and the Qing dynasty along with it, into the twentieth century.
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already appears banner system baqi became become Beijing bondservant called capital century changed Chapter China Chinese banner Chinese bannermen cited civil commander common companies conquest continued court cultural distinct dynasty early edict Eight Banners eighteenth century emperor established ethnic evidence fact figures forces garrison Hangzhou households hundred hunt identity imperial important included institutional Jurchen Kangxi land language late later less lieutenant living Manchu Manchu cities Manzu matter means memorial military Ming Mongol never noted officials original percent political population position posts practice presented Press problem provincial Qianlong Qing Qingdai QLMaZPZZ rank reason received referred regular reign remained residence rule separate served shilu slaves soldiers Standard status suggests taels thousand troops University walls Xi'an Yongzheng YZMZPZZ
Pagina xxv - Our youth, of labor patient, earn their bread ; Hardly they work with frugal diet fed. From ploughs and harrows sent to seek renown, They fight in fields, and storm the shaken town.
Pagina 22 - I have heard of men using the doctrines of our great land to change barbarians, but I have never yet heard of any being changed by barbarians.
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