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From Frontier Policy to Foreign PolicyThe Question of India and the Transformation of Geopolitics in Qing China$
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Matthew Mosca

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780804782241

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804782241.001.0001

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The Opium War and the British Empire, 1839–1842

The Opium War and the British Empire, 1839–1842

(p.237) Seven The Opium War and the British Empire, 1839–1842
From Frontier Policy to Foreign Policy
Stanford University Press

This chapter explores the Opium War and the British empire during 1839–1842. New appreciation of the British as an empire contributed to the increased quantity of research conducted during the Opium War. The mission by Lin Zexu eradicated the opium trade in Guangdong. Lin was involved in developing opium policy. The Opium War can be regarded as a peerless opportunity for securing a Qing alliance against the British. At the end of the Opium War, Qing officials confronting the manifest power of the British remained unpersuaded that it rested on sound foundations. It is noted that the significance of the Opium War lay in its impact on the empire's geostrategic worldview. The Qing state persisted in its frontier-specific operational geography even though this was ill-suited to elucidating the overall strategic situation of the Qing empire in relation to its multipronged British foe.

Keywords:   Opium War, British empire, Lin Zexu, Guangdong, opium trade, opium policy, Qing empire

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