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The Fall and Rise of China


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"Over the last 150 years China was repeatedly humiliated, by Western imperial powers and by its smaller neighbour, Japan. For a time the 'Middle Kingdom' seemed on the verge of becoming a pawn of foreign interests. Then, in a process unmatched in history, this great culture recovered vigorously from its seemingly hopeless plight - so much so that today the state, its leaders and its burgeoning economic and military might are globally acknowledged and not infrequently feared. The Fall and Rise of China: Healing the Trauma of History traces the country's development in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries up to the present day and offers an explanation of the collective mentality that enabled China, confronted by the superiority of Western science and technology, to commit to the unsparing self-diagnosis that enabled its impressive rise and radical transformation. The country identified the aspects of Western civilization it must adopt in order to remove the obstacles to its own rebirth, taking a path of reason and renewal. Profoundly wounded, China prescribed for itself a therapy that followed the same principle used in Chinese medicine: the cause lies first and foremost within oneself. Prevention and treatment must therefore always begin with one's own deficiencies and mistakes. In this powerful polemic Paul U. Unschuld presents an entirely new understanding and analysis of China's past and offers fascinating insights into its possible future."

About the Author

Paul U. Unschuld is Professor and Director of the Horst-Goertz Institute for the Theory, History and Ethics of Chinese Life Sciences at Charite - Universitatsmedizin Berlin and the author of What is Medicine? Western and Eastern Approaches to Healing (2009).

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