Unit 4: Imperialism
What are your thoughts on the
presidential election? Is voting
important? When you get older, will
you vote?
What We Will Learn:
10.4.4: Describe the independence struggles of the colonized regions of the world,
including the roles of ideology and religion in China.
12.1 China Resists Outside Influence
Explain China’s resistance to foreigners.
Describe rebellions that shook China.
Summarize effects of China’s reforms.
Trace the growth of nationalism there.
Essential Question
What importance did spheres of
influence have on China?
The Big Idea
Western economic pressure forced China to
open to foreign trade and influence. China has
become an increasingly important member of
the global community.
Chinese looked down on all foreigners due to pride in their
ancient culture
However, the emperor of the Qing Dynasty allowed an English
ambassador in 1793
The Englishmen brought gifts of the West’s most
advanced technology:
clocks, globes, musical instruments, hot air balloon
The emperor was not impressed
-sent a letter to England stating the Chinese already had
everything they needed and were not interested in the
“strange” objects that the West were offering them
China was able to reject offers from the
West because it was self-sufficient
-healthy agricultural economy
-mining (natural resources) provided jobs
-manufacturing – silk, cotton, and
Check for Understanding
Why was China able to reject offers from
the West?
 China had little interest in trade with the West due to their selfsufficiency
 Refused to trade with most countries
 European merchants were determined to find a product the
Chinese would buy in large quantities
• Europeans eventually found
Opium- habit forming narcotic
made from poppy plants
• British smuggled opium into
China for nonmedical use
and by 1835, as many as 12
million Chinese people were
addicted to the drug
• In the 19th century, Opium addiction spread rapidly
among Chinese government employees and
soldiers. Historians blame the drug for a decline in
China’s standard of living and for the deterioration
of public services, which eventually led to massive
peasant uprisings during the mid-1800s.
• Growing supply of Opium caused problems for China
• The Qing emperor was angry about the situation and
had advisors write letters to Queen Victoria of England
• Despite letters from the
Chinese, the British
refused to stop trading
• Resulting in the Opium
War between China and
Britain in 1839
• Battles were mostly at sea
• China’s outdated ships
were no match for the
British Navy and steampowered boats
• China suffered a
humiliating defeat
Check for Understanding
Why did war break out between China
and Britain?
• Signed the Treaty of Nanjing for
peace in 1842
• Treaty gave Britain the island of
Hong Kong
• Gained extraterritorial rightsforeigners not subject to
Chinese law while at Chinese
trade ports
• Many Chinese greatly resented
the foreigners and bustling trade
in Opium they conducted
• Foreigners were not the greatest
of China’s problems
• China’s population became an
overwhelming challenge
• By 1850 there were 430 million
Chinese- a 30% gain in only 60
• Food production did not increase
• hunger became widespread,
people were discouraged, and
Opium addiction rose steadily
• As a result, the Chinese began to
rebel against the Qing Dynasty
Check for Understanding
Why did the Chinese begin to revolt after
the Treaty of Nanjing?
• During the 1830s, Hong Xiuquan began recruiting followers to
help him build a “Heavenly Kingdom of Great Peace”
• In his kingdom, all Chinese people would share China’s vast
wealth and no one would live in poverty
• This movement was called the Taiping Rebellion
(Taiping means “great peace”)
• By the 1850s, Hong organized a massive
peasant army of over 1 million people
• Taiping army took control of large areas
of southeastern China
• 1853- Hong captured the city of Nanjing
and declared it the capital
• Hong then withdrew from everyday life
and left his family and friends in charge
of the government
• Taiping government constantly feuded
and were eventually brought down by the
imperial powers of France and Britain
• China paid a terrible price with losing
more than 20 million people in the
Video: Tai Ping Rebellion
Check for Understanding
What were the results of the Taiping
• China faced many internal problems with other small
uprisings after the Taiping Rebellion
• They faced external problems as well due to increased
foreign pressure
• Other nations were aware of China’s growing problems
and began to take advantage of the situation
• European powers and Japan
gained a strong hold or
Sphere of influence on
China’s economy as they
forced them to sign treaties
after each conflict
• “Sphere of influence”, is an
area where a foreign country
controls all economic
 The land would still belong to
China but another foreign
government would control it.
Check for Understanding
What is the sphere of influence?
• By 1899, the U.S. was
a major power in Asia
• 3rd largest navy in the
• Primary interest in Asia
was not conquest
but commerce new
• In 1899, U.S. Secretary
of State John Hay
established the Open
Door policy.
• This policy declared
that other nations must
share trading rights in
China with the US-“leave their doors
• Other nations decided
they had to agree.
China was not
I want a
piece too!
• Chinese pressed for
strong reforms due to
humiliation from
• Demanded modernization,
reorganizing education,
strengthened economy,
and improved military
• Failed attempts to reform
China led to violent
Check for Understanding
How did the Open Door Policy help lead
to the upsurge of Chinese nationalism?
• Secret Chinese
society- Society of
Righteous and
Harmonious Fists
• Began organizing to
kick out foreign
• One of these groups
were called the
• In 1900 the Boxers attacked
foreigners, killing hundreds of
Christian missionaries, and
• They kept the city under siege
for several months
• The government sent in 19,000
troops marched into Beijing and
quickly defeated the Boxers
• Despite the failure of the Boxer
Rebellion- Chinese nationalism
Check for Understanding
What was the Boxer Rebellion?

Day 5 12.1 China Tries to Resist Outside - Mr