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Asia and the Great WarA Shared History$
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Xu Guoqi

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199658190

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199658190.001.0001

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Asia Rethinks Its Relation to the World

Asia Rethinks Its Relation to the World

(p.213) 8 Asia Rethinks Its Relation to the World
Asia and the Great War

Xu Guoqi

Oxford University Press

This chapter concentrates on the boundary-crossing movement of ideas and the development of pan-Asianism during and after the war. Many Asians, probably most, saw the Great War as simply a war of white people, a European war, and a war between Western countries. But they got involved, and the war and its aftermath forced them to think about who they were and what kind of positions they held in the world. Indians, Chinese, and Japanese were all consumed with rethinking the relationship between Asia and the West, between Eastern civilizations and Western civilizations, and what direction they should move in after the war. The war and its destruction had discredited the moral values of Western civilization, and what happened at the Paris Peace Conference fundamentally diminished Asians’ expectations and respect for the Western Powers. This chapter addresses the cultural effects and civilizational significance of the Great War for Asians.

Keywords:   John Dewey, Liang Qichao, Yan Fu, decline of the West, pan-Asianism, Ouyou xinyin lu, Kang Youwei, datong, Lajpat Rai, Rabindranath Tagore

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