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Gombozhab T Tsybikov

Tsybikov was the first scholar with a European education to visit Tibet and describe its monasteries and temples as an eyewitness traveler and an objective researcher. Tsybikov had two distinct advantages: an ethnic Buryat he could travel as a Buddhist pilgrim and thus have a chance of reaching its mysterious capital Lhasa, the religious and political center of Tibet, which was barred to outsiders, especially Europeans; as a scholar educated at a European university he had the historical and linguistic background to understand and describe what he saw. Tsybikov understood the secretive nature of the lama state and was careful to hide his work as a researcher. It was his journal that became the basis of A Buddhist Pilgrim at the Shrines of Tibet, which has both the vividness of a traveller’s eyewitness account and the informed detachment of a scholar. As a record of both religious practices and the everyday life in Tibet before Chinese inroads during the twentieth century effaced that way of life, Tsybikov’s book is a unique and invaluable snapshot of a lost culture.

6 Muslims at the Yamen Gate

Translating Justice in Late-Qing Xinjiang

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Eric T. Schluessel

William T. Rowe

Known primarily for his reformist proposals in the areas of military affairs, foreign policy, the salt monopoly, and the grain tribute system, the influential early nineteenth-century literatus Bao Shichen 包世臣 (1775–1855) also made throughout his life numerous suggestions regarding the improvement of agricultural practice and of rural life. Contrary to the arguments of his older contemporary Hong Liangji that the empire was facing an imminent demographic and provisioning crisis, Bao argued that there was ample possibility for increasing crop yields, and improving popular livelihoods, if a more rational approach was taken to cropping decisions, farm labor allocation, agricultural commercialization, and local-level social organization. Bao was fond of quantification, and, far more than Hong, employed statistical analysis (albeit crude) to bolster his arguments. Fundamentally committed to increasing the power and wealth of the imperial state in the face of threats both foreign and domestic, Bao was highly optimistic that this could be achieved simultaneously with fulfilling his other basic commitment, relieving what he saw as widespread popular immiseration.

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Hans T. Bakker, Yuko Yokochi and Peter C. Bisschop

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Hans T. Bakker, Yuko Yokochi and Peter C. Bisschop

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Hans T. Bakker, Yuko Yokochi and Peter C. Bisschop

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Hans T. Bakker, Yuko Yokochi and Peter C. Bisschop

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Hans T. Bakker, Yuko Yokochi and Peter C. Bisschop