Chinese Modernization Essay

1103 Words5 Pages
In the 19th century, the era of imperialism of western powers, under the pressure of invasion and encroachment from foreign powers, the two isolated nations, China and Japan were forced to undergo reforms to modernize in order to strengthen the country. After decades of revolution, the result of the reforms in the two countries are contrary. While China continue to struggle with western powers and faced defeats, Japan had became a world power and was treated equally with the western powers in 1911. This essay will discuss the reasons contributing to the huge contrast of the result of the attempts of modernization in China and Japan.

First of all, the lack of knowledge of the West and the pride of the Chinese culture had caused the Chinese ruling class unable to fully understand its own problems. Before the Opium War broke out in 1942, the knowledge of the west in China is limited, the Chinese official and the emperor were reading text written in the Ming
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The Chinese ruling class was instead opposed to the reform in China. The conservatives worried that changes in the reform will threaten themselves and weakened their power. The Hundred Days’ Reform is a great demonstration of how the power struggle resist the reform in China. The reform was short-lived, changes in political, social and military, economic system were proposed but were merely in paper due to opposition from the conservative Chinese official and the empress Cixi, who felt threatened by the changes, reformers backing the reform were then caught and executed. (Fairbank, Goldman, 1992) The reformation in China faced major opposition and thus the reform in China mainly focused in implementing western innovation and technology and little is changed in the more controversy political and legal
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