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Why is China still so backward? [Copy link] 中文

Rank: 4

Post time 2006-4-14 06:40:28 |Display all floors
Why?

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Rank: 8Rank: 8

Post time 2006-4-14 07:14:49 |Display all floors

Eh, We've Been Robbed?

That would be a substantial reason.

China's real decline came with the Opium War and the ability for the UK to take out literally tons of China's silver.  I think shortly before that China still accounted for about a quarter of the world's GDP.  Thereafter the foreign powers just came in repeatedly to plunder at will.  It went down from there.

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Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2006-4-14 08:09:27 |Display all floors
I think you've got something backwards here... Europe provided China with silver, in exchange for tea, porcelain, and tea. They provided China with so much silver that the European sources were being depleted.

And the Chinese were not willing to trade with anything but silver, but the Chinese had developed a taste for opium, so the British began a forced trade with opium instead.

I am not defending the opium trade or anything, but the fact remains that China was backward already then, not willing to trade or explore the world.
瑞典人,活着为中国娃娃而死。汉学家、工程师、摄影师、网页设计师等等。爱好:政治、历史、科技、文化等。王菲迷。自由主义者。

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Rank: 8Rank: 8

Post time 2006-4-14 08:16:41 |Display all floors

That's the Robber's Pogeny Speaking

Liangzai, what you are pushing is the robber's logic.  China did not want to trade because the West did not have any competitve advantage in anything.  So the robbers came in and forced "trade" at gunpoint, forcing the Chinese government to stop defending the country against narcotics.  

It is coming back full circle though, as the drugs are now flooding the white men's world.  What goes around, comes around.

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Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2006-4-14 08:31:55 |Display all floors
Of course the West had a competitive advantage... the Chinese soon realized the worth of weapons (at least when the Japanese arrived), science, technology, industrialization... and since they realized this, the empire fell, and China went through a horrible crisis, now coming back from it...
瑞典人,活着为中国娃娃而死。汉学家、工程师、摄影师、网页设计师等等。爱好:政治、历史、科技、文化等。王菲迷。自由主义者。

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Rank: 6Rank: 6

Post time 2006-4-14 09:23:35 |Display all floors
I blame China's old examination system. For centuries upon centuries, nothing about that exam changed--it was all about knowing the classics and being able to write poetry and essays, with the eight-legged essay being the worst. The rigid format allowed for no creativity and new ideas; instead, scholars simply copied the style of the ancients, but it became empty over time. There was also no focus on sciences or technology. Instead of specialists in charge of the army, China had the equivalent of PhDs in literature--not that they're not smart, but they simply don't belong there. There was also too much theorizing and not enough practice. Not only that, but family connections were also playing too much of a role in getting people a place in the government.

This situation left China stagnant and complacent. By the late Qing, the dynasty was weakening anyway, and the rest of the world knocking on China's doors only worsened things. Instead of humbling themselves to the possibility that changes were necessary and other countries had risen to become equal to or greater than them in power, they tried to keep up the old ways like the treaty system and refused to accept that they were no longer the world's greatest power.

Enter Opium Wars, Sino-Japanese Wars, an embarrassing series of treaties, the downfall of the dynastic system... things briefly looked up for a while in the 1910s, and then the country began to disintegrate into civil war. Ever since then, China's had to play catch-up with the rest of the world. It's an enormous group of setbacks to overcome, but I think eventually they will be overcome. It'll be harder for China than, say, Japan, simply because China is so huge, and reaching the agrarian/peasant population is hard... still, I have hope for China.

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Rank: 4

Post time 2006-4-14 09:58:06 |Display all floors
The thought change is the most basic element. Comparing the after and the before Chinese opening up and reform , China have achieve great improvement in many field ,especially the economy .


All the improvements are come from the Deng’s great thought , and now more and more Chinese are learning the western’s advanced experience ,and this can speed up to catch up with the developed countries .

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