A concise history of an uprising that took down a three-hundred-year-old dynasty and united the great powersThe year is 1900, and Western empires are locked in entanglements across the globe. The British are losing a bitter war against the Boers while the German kaiser is busy building a vast new navy. The United States is struggling to put down an insurgency in the South Pacific while the upstart imperialist Japan begins to make clear to neighboring Russia its territorial ambition. In China, a perennial pawn in the Great Game, a mysterious group of superstitious peasants is launching attacks on the Western powers they fear are corrupting their country. These ordinary Chinese – called Boxers by the West because of their martial arts showmanship – rise up seemingly out of nowhere. Foreshadowing the insurgencies of our recent past, they lack a centralized leadership and instead tap into latent nationalism and deep economic frustration to build their army.
The Boxer Rebellion and the Great Game in China
Farrar Straus Giroux
Non Fiction /