Fabled to be 2200 years old and 4300 miles long, the Great Wall seems to make an overwhelmingly confident physical statement about China's age-old sense of itself as an advanced civilisation anxious to draw a line between itself and the "barbarians" at its borders. But behind the Wall's intimidating exterior - and the myths that have built up around it - lies a complex history of China's view of the outside world, and itself. The Great Wall is an epic history which explores the conquests and cataclysms of the Chinese empire over the past 3000 years. It is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand China's past, present and future.
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