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Get A Great Undertaking: Mechanization and Social Change in a PDF

By Jeff Hornibrook

ISBN-10: 1438456875

ISBN-13: 9781438456874

Jeff Hornibrook presents a different, microcosmic examine the method of industrialization in a single chinese language neighborhood on the flip of the 20th century. Industrialization got here overdue to China, yet was once eventually embraced and hastened to help the state's strategic and armed forces pursuits. In Pingxiang County within the highlands of Jiangxi Province, coalmining was once seasonal paintings; peasants rented mines from lineage leaders to paintings after the harvest. those traditions replaced in 1896 whilst the court docket made up our minds that the county's mines have been crucial for industrialization. overseas engineers and chinese language officers arrived to set up the recent social and monetary order required for mechanized mining, person who could swap issues for individuals from all degrees of society. The outsiders developed a Westernized manufacturing unit city that sat uneasily in the current group. Mistreatment of the neighborhood inhabitants, together with the pressured buy of gentry-held houses and the mixing of peasants into factory-style exertions schemes, sparked a chain of rebellions that wounded the empire and tore on the textile of the neighborhood. utilizing tales present in memoirs of elite chinese language and international engineers, correspondence among gentry and strong officers, travelogues of yank missionaries and engineers, in addition to different resources, Hornibrook bargains a desirable background of the social and political results of industrialization in Pingxiang County.

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Additional resources for A Great Undertaking: Mechanization and Social Change in a Late Imperial Chinese Coalmining Community

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Relatives, clansmen, neighbors, and local villagers felt free to visit us often, for we liked and respected each other. 13 This passage provides several important pieces of information regarding the development of migrant families into powerful gentry members. What is most important is that Zhang’s mother provides, in a nonconfrontational and self-serving story line, a depiction of the gradual growth of one patriarchy over other relatives and neighbors. From this narrative it is easy to imagine the generations of struggle and negotiation between patrilines over political and financial control of the community.

In an entry in the gazetteer, one author explained that tu, or small communities, were organized as lineages and functioned as such: The native tu of Pingxiang each started from its remote ancestor, and his sons and grandsons continued [to live in the area] for generations. Each tu established an ancestral temple and the people of the ten jia gathered once a year to worship their ancestors. Moreover, they investigated comings and goings, and prohibited imposters. Therefore, entering the tu was very difficult.

Not only did this method at times improve the chances of extracting lower and more lucrative seams, but it allowed the workers to walk in and out of the adit without the use of ladders or windlasses. 48 To prop up the mine shafts, miners used timber along the ceilings and walls. Incorporation of timbers into the mine shaft had to be done properly in order to maintain structural integrity inside the artificial cave. Miners quickly found that timbers should be placed at slight angles when they prop up their shafts.

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A Great Undertaking: Mechanization and Social Change in a Late Imperial Chinese Coalmining Community by Jeff Hornibrook


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