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British policy towards China, with special reference to the Shantung question, 1918 - 1922

Richards, Peter (1970) British policy towards China, with special reference to the Shantung question, 1918 - 1922. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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The aim of the thesis is to examine British policies towards China and the Shantung question between 1918 and 1922 with the object of establishing whether they were too indifferent to China's desiderata with t he possible result that Anglo-Chinese relations were unnecessarily embittered. Study opens with Germany's acquisitions in the Shantung province before 1914 and their administration. It proceeds to Japan's conquest of the German possessions in Shantung after the outbreak of the first world war and the actions which sought to make her occupation permanent, such as the Japanese twenty-one demands of 1915 and the Anglo-Japanese exchange of notes of 1917. The consequence of China's entry into the war, including the British pledges made to Japan before the Sino-Japanese treaty of September, 1918, are dealt with in Chapter 11. Indications that Britain would support Japan's claims to Shantung at the Paris peace conference are seen to be fairly decisive in Chapter Ill. The centrepiece of this study is Chapter IV which describes the negotiations at the peace council in detail and stresses the role of the British I delegates, particularly Balfour,·in securing recognition for Japan's claims in the treaty of Versailles. Last minute attempts of the Chinese to reverse the decision, China 's refusal to sign the treaty, and the importance of the Chinese government's action in severing negotiations with Britain over Ti bet are reviewed in Chapters V and VI. Throughout 1920, Britain's far eastern policies were dominated by the question of the Anglo-Japanese alliance and naval considerations, but Britain's suspicions over Japan's actions in China had an obvious bearing upon her relations with Japan. This is made clear by the Curzon-Chinda exchanges described in Chapter VII, which also discusses the attempts which were made by Britain to reach a better far-eastern understanding with America. Chapter VIII describes British policy to China in detail as revealed by the cabinet meetings of may and June, 1921, in preparation for the Washington conference. The study ends (Chapter IX) with a brief account of the Shantung negotiations associated with the Washington conference in which Britain had an important, if secondary role.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 1970 Peter Richards
Library of Congress subject classification: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
J Political Science > JZ International relations

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