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Merchants of War and PeaceBritish Knowledge of China in the Making of the Opium War$
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Song-Chuan Chen

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9789888390564

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888390564.001.0001

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The Warlike and Pacific Parties

The Warlike and Pacific Parties

(p.11) 2 The Warlike and Pacific Parties
Merchants of War and Peace

Song-Chuan Chen

Hong Kong University Press

This chapter describes how the British community in Canton used its English-language press (newspapers and journals published in Canton) to debate China, Britain and free trade. The Warlike party gradually settled on a new perspective of China that was understood in terms of war, while the Pacific party denounced the war rhetoric. The Pacific party saw Britain primarily as a Christian nation of peace. The Warlike party’s aggressive imperialistic discourse became marked when compared to the peace argument of the Pacific party.

Keywords:   British private merchants, the Warlike Party, the Pacific Party, teaching Chinese free trade, British national honour, British maritime public sphere

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