ABSTRACT

THE STORY of the West's relations with East Asia is one which inevitably attracts the interest of the Western student. It is obviously pertinent to our own history and to events in the world today; it presents fewer difficulties of language or of access to records than subjects which have a place only in the domestic history of countries such as China and Japan; and it furnishes a wide range of problems which have still to be resolved. There is much we have yet to learn about the nature and motives ofWestern action, for example, especially in the nineteenth century. Even the mechanism - in economic if not in political terms - has rarely been studied in sufficient detail, despite the existence of ample material on which such study could be based. For some time to come there will be no lack of topics for research within this general field.