Pamela Crossley

Pamela Crossley is Collis Professor of History at Dartmouth College. China’s Global Empire: Qing, 1636-1912 is forthcoming.

We possess all things: The Macartney Embassy

Pamela Crossley, 18 August 2022

In​ 1793 George Macartney, the former governor of Madras, arrived in Beijing as the envoy of George III. Nobody in Beijing knew why he was there. He assumed that his commission from William Pitt made him an ambassador, and that his mission was to negotiate new trade relations between Britain and the Qing empire. Like many in Britain he believed that the ‘Canton System’ was...

Empress Dowager Cixi​ of the Qing dynasty is one of those historical figures who are renovated from time to time as the moment demands. In the first decade of the 20th century, she was either the vivacious tea hostess who had protected foreigners from Boxer mobs, or the murderous xenophobe who had set the rioters on them in the first place. In the 1960s and 1970s, she was one of a small...

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