Now Australia's Biggest Toy Shop

We won't be beaten by anyone. Guaranteed

The Great Wall


Product Description
Product Details


There is no Great Wall of China, argues Lovell, who teaches Chinese history at Cambridge University. Instead, there are many Great Walls-physical, mental, cultural, military and economic-separating China from the outside world. The 4,300-mile-long wall is far more complex than any of the thousands of tourists taking a photo along its famous battlements realizes. Indeed, to the Chinese themselves, their wall has variously signified repression, freedom, security, vulnerability, cultural superiority, economic backwardness, imperial greatness and national humiliation. Still, myths about it abound. Far from it being unbreachable, Chinese emperors relied on the wall only as a last resort to fend off their enemies. (The Ming dynasty, for instance, found it useless against the victorious Manchus, who merely bribed the gatekeepers to let them in.) "As a strategy that has survived for more than two millennia," Lovell writes, "China's frontier wall is a monumental metaphor for reading China and its history, for defining a culture and a worldview...." Lovell tells the gripping, colorful story of the wall up to the present day, including a perceptive discussion of the "Great Firewall"-the Internet, which has replaced nomadic raiders as the most threatening of China's attackers. And no, you cannot see it from the Moon. (Mar.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

For a long time in both China and the outside world, the Great Wall was the symbol of isolation, self-sufficiency, and arrogant tradition. But now that China has opened itself to the world (or "re-opened" itself, as it were), that stereotype no longer fits. A new understanding of China is needed, and historians have flocked to rethink historic foreign relations. With wide experience in contemporary China, Lovell (Chinese history & literature, Cambridge; trans., A Dictionary of Maqiao) tells the story of the wall as she shows how China was shaped over the course of 2000 years by interactions with Central Asia and the peoples of the steppe (she calls them barbarians, a term smacking of those old stereotypes). The opening chapter on the 18th- and 19th-century encounters with Britain does not reflect recent scholarly debates, but the terrific concluding chapter, "Great Wall, the Great Mall, and the Great Firewall," contains insightful personal observations on China's relations with the world today. Larger public libraries would do well to acquire this lively survey for curious readers with some knowledge of China.-Charles W. Hayford, Northwestern Univ., Evanston, IL Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Ask a Question About this Product More...
Write your question below:
Look for similar items by category
Home » Books » History » Asia » China
How Fishpond Works
Fishpond works with suppliers all over the world to bring you a huge selection of products, really great prices, and delivery included on over 25 million products that we sell. We do our best every day to make Fishpond an awesome place for customers to shop and get what they want — all at the best prices online.
Webmasters, Bloggers & Website Owners
You can earn a 5% commission by selling The Great Wall: China Against the World, 1000 BC - AD 2000 on your website. It's easy to get started - we will give you example code. After you're set-up, your website can earn you money while you work, play or even sleep! You should start right now!
Authors / Publishers
Are you the Author or Publisher of a book? Or the manufacturer of one of the millions of products that we sell. You can improve sales and grow your revenue by submitting additional information on this title. The better the information we have about a product, the more we will sell!
Item ships from and is sold by, Inc.
Back to top