Using the 1913 huaqiao built community hall of the village of Chung Kok in Long Du, Zhongshan as an illustration, this opening chapter lays the foundation of the qiaoxiang perspective that is the theme of this work. The case study nature of this history is explained and justified. Definitions of words used from both Chinese and English are given and the timeframe of the work outlined. The range of sources employed from archives to oral history and from the villages of south China and around the Pacific are appraised. A chapter by chapter review of the work is given and it is explained how the history of the development of the huaqiao pattern and the significance of the qiaoxiang perspective will be discussed and expanded upon. In particular it is argued that diaspora and transnational concepts fail to reveal the motivations of the individual participants of history in academic imperatives for generalisation and theoretical constructs.
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