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Fifty-Five Days that Shook The World: The 1900 Siege Of Beijing in Fact And Fiction (An Illustrated Talk by Jeffrey Wasserstrom)

Strand Campus, London

14 May Boxer Rebellion

This talk will explore the widely varied ways that the story of the most famous and infamous episode of the Chinese Boxer Crisis was told while it was taking place and has been retold ever since. Wasserstrom, who is completing work on a book about China and the world in 1900, will look at texts ranging from newspaper articles and novels to screenplays and comic books. He will stress that not only have Chinese and foreign writers often handled the tale of the siege very differently, but there has been and continues to be a good deal of variation in the way that people based in different parts of the world beyond China's borders have dealt with the clashes between the Boxers, the Qing, and the army made up of soldiers marching behind eight foreign flags that conquered Beijing in August 1900.  

Speaker Biography:

Jeffrey Wasserstrom is Chancellor’s Professor of History at UC Irvine.  His books include, as author, Eight Juxtapositions: China through Imperfect Analogies from Mark Twain to Manchukuo (Penguin 2016), and, as editor, The Oxford Illustrated History of Modern China (2016).  In addition to writing for academic journals, he has contributed to many general interest venues, among them the New York Times, the FT, the TLS, and the Los Angeles Review of Books, aka LARB.  He is the Editor of the Journal of Asian Studies and an academic editor of a new online venture, the LARB China Channel

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