This comprehensive but concise narrative of China since the eighteenth century builds its story around the delicate relationship between central government and local communities.Rejects the traditional view of China as a wholly harmonious society based on principles of stability the Unwobbling Pivot of Ezra Pound's translation of the Chinese classic ZhongyongProvides an original interpretation, arguing that developments can be explained through an understanding of Chinas surprising swings between centralization and decentralization, between local initiative and central authoritarianismServes as an introduction to the subject, while readers with a background in Chinese history will find the book offers a personal perspective and addresses long-standing interpretive issuesSupported by a variety of timelines, maps, illustrations, and extensive notes for further readingPlaces Chinas history within the context of global change

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