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The Power of PositionBeijing University, Intellectuals, and Chinese Political Culture, 1898-1929$
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Timothy Weston

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780520237674

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520237674.001.0001

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The Imperial University and Late-Qing Beijing

The Imperial University and Late-Qing Beijing

Chapter:
(p.40) Chapter 2 The Imperial University and Late-Qing Beijing
Source:
The Power of Position
Author(s):

Timothy B. Weston

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520237674.003.0003

The imperial government's focus on education for the purpose of training servants of the state left a vacuum that was swiftly filled by the private efforts of the Jiangnan elite. Zhang Baixi declared that the Imperial University needed to have a vibrant translation bureau. Many of the officials Zhang hired and upon whom he relied for advice—Shen Zhaozhi, Li Xisheng, Zhang Heling, Zeng Guangquan, and Zhao Congfan—were closely aligned with Wang Kangnian, one of the leading reformers of 1898. The transitional character of the university's culture is addressed. The Qing government faced a delicate and challenging situation—a large-scale, patriotic, and highly emotional student movement spreading across the country, in direct violation of the state's ban on student interference in politics. Zhang Zhidong's reorganization and domestication of the university is then discussed. It was Zhang had secured a grant of two million taels that permitted its further development.

Keywords:   Imperial University, late-Qing Beijing, Zhang Baixi, Zhang Zhidong, Qing government, Jiangnan elite

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