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How to answer ‘was Hitler responsible for WWII and why’ in a manner expected from a 14 year old… Can’t start in 1870. Can’t mention historical debate. Can’t do this.
You only go back to 1870? Personally, I’d start with the Spanish Inquisition.
(painting by Wang Hui)
The establishment of formal diplomatic relations with China also stimulated the writing of Chinese poetry and prose.
In 1877 the Chinese government sent a Minister Plenipotentiary with a large staff, including the distinguished man of letters Huang Zunxian (1848-1095). The Japanese officials enjoyed associating with these Chinese diplomats, who were apparently selected mainly for their literary talents. Social contacts with Western diplomats were generally uncomfortable for the Japanese, at a loss how to entertain their guests, but the Chinese it was at least possible to “converse” with the brush; though they differed in speech, the Chinese and Japanese belonged to the same world of Chinese characters and shared the pleasures of the gentleman-scholar which innumerable Chinese poets had celebrated.
In 1879 the well-known writer Wang Tao (1828-1897) visited Japan for four months and was kept busy with receptions offered by Japanese writers, who were eager to display their proficiency in classical Chinese and to learn the latest theories of poetics from the source. Qing poetry came for the first time to be widely appreciated. In 1878 Moro Shunto published an anthology of twenty-four Qing poets, starting a vogue for their style. On the other hand, Hung Zunxian published in 1879 日本雜事詩 (Poems on Various Subjects Concerning Japan), displaying an interest Japan which was then rare among Chinese. In 1882 Li Shuchang (1837-1897), the new Minister, arrived in Japan and soon was mingling freely with Japanese intellectuals. Minister Li devoted himself especially to collecting Chinese books that had been lost in China but preserved in Japan. When Li left Japan in 1890 Shigeno Seisai wrote a long prose farewell in Chinese, recounting both Japan’s indebtedness to China and Li’s accomplishments during his term as Minister.
Even Japanese who travelled to the West during this period often wrote their impressions in Chinese verse, as in this example by Narushima Ryuhoku (1837-1884)
The startled traveller wakes to the thunder by his pillow,
Rises and climbs among old trees to the roaring brink.
In the deep night, white all heaven and earth;
The moon comes, parting the curtain of a million misty peals.
One poet wrote a history of the West in 100 separate Chiense quatrains, going all the way from Adam and Eve to Bismarck. However, the Wanderer of the Eastern Seas, we are told, “always lamented that Americans lack elegance and artistic taste, and the he no friend with whom he could engage in the literary pleasures of describing flowers and the moon. For all their admiration of Western culture, the Japanese missed the aesthetic interests which they traditionally associated with cultured people, regardless of their occupations.
…the most popular kanshi (poems written in Chinese) were not by by professional poets but by soldiers…
Not only did Chinese visit Japan, but some Japanese travelled to China, for the first time in three hundred years. They were delighted to inspect sites long familiar to them from poetry, and they were moved to write poetry and prose of their own in Chinese.
- From “The Survival of Chinese literary Traditions in the Meiji Era” by Donald Keene.
What I want anyone reading this to take out of it is that Japanese attitudes towards China weren’t monotonic from 1853-1945! That’s almost a century of history. And even after the First Sino-Japanese War, there were people like Natsume Soseki who were more fond of Chinese culture than Western culture.
I’m writing a paper for a historiography class right now and having this problem.
Niyazov was president of Turkmenistan and later promoted himself to President for Life. He seized power after the breakup of the Soviet Union, filling the vacuum left by Joseph Stalin and Vladimir Lenin. He also looked like Emeril Lagasse.
Niyazov had a penchant for renaming things. He renamed the months of the year, with January named “Turkmenbashi,” which means Father of the Turkmen, a name he gave himself. He also changed the names of the days of the week to things like “Young Day” and “Spirituality Day” (“Twinkie Twin Day” was presumably discussed but ultimately not selected). He also changed the word “bread” to “Gurbansoltan” which incidentally was the name of his mother, suggesting that one of his fantasies was to see his mother eaten alive by poor people.
Niyazov outlawed beards on men and makeup on television anchors, and prohibited both chewing tobacco and lip-syncing on Turkmenistan soil. In lieu of tobacco, he suggested that people chew on bones, which he argued would strengthen their teeth. The types of bones and how to obtain them were left to the imagination of the populace.
He also wrote a book called Ruhnama, which meant “Book of the Soul.” Students were required to study it in schools and mosques had to give it equal respect to the Quran or be demolished. Memorization of the book was even required for getting a driver’s license. Niyazov told his people that as a result of a pact made between him and Allah, anybody who read his book three times would automatically go to heaven.
Then in 2005, Niyazov launched a copy of it into space for aliens to read. This is as good a time as any to mention that Niyazov was illiterate.
Finally, to cement his legacy of batshit lunacy, he ordered that an ice palace be built in the capital of Turkmenistan, which as you may know is a desert country.
What happened to him?
Niyazov’s life was marred by assassination attempts that probably surprised nobody but himself. But blessed by the spirits of the Turkmen, he escaped every one of them before dying of cardiac arrest in 2006, which may have been a result of being poisoned, presumably by some 16-year-old Turkman who failed his driver’s license exam.
Members of the New Zealand Army’s Maori Battalion, who had fought in Greece, performing a haka for the King of Greece.
Helwan, Egypt - June 24, 1941
Charlotte Ray Became 1st Black Female Lawyer 140 Years Ago
Pioneering Black female lawyer Charlotte E. Ray achieved her historic feat 140 years ago today in 1872, becoming just the third woman ever admitted to practice law in the country at the time. Ray was also the first woman admitted to practice law in the nation’s capital and the first woman to argue a case in front of the Supreme Court.
(Source: , via historical-nonfiction)