Explorers and Scientists in China's Borderlands, 1880-1950

Edited by Denise M. Glover, Stevan Harrell, Charles F. McKhann, and Margaret Byrne Swain

  • Published: 2011
  • Subject Listing: Asian Studies / China; Anthropology
  • Bibliographic information: 320 pp., 71 illus., 6 x 9 in.
  • Territorial rights: Not Available in Southeast Asia
  • Contents

The scientists and explorers profiled in this engaging study of pioneering Euro-American exploration of late imperial and Republican China range from botanists to ethnographers to missionaries. Although a diverse lot, all believed in objective, progressive, and universally valid science; a close association between scientific and humanistic knowledge; a lack of conflict between science and faith; and the union of the natural world and the world of "nature people." Explorers and Scientists in China's Borderlands examines their cultural and personal assumptions while emphasizing their remarkable lives, and considers their contributions to a body of knowledge that has important contemporary significance.

Essays are devoted to D. C. Graham, Joseph Rock, Reginald Farrer and George Forrest, Ernest Henry Wilson, Paul Vial, Johan Gunnar Andersson and Ding Wenjiang, and Friedrich Weiss and Hedwig Weiss-Sonnenburg. Richly illustrated with historic photographs, this collection reveals the extraordinary lives and times of these remarkable people.
Denise M. Glover is visiting assistant professor of anthropology, University of Puget Sound; Stevan Harrell is professor of anthropology, University of Washington; Charles F. McKhann is professor of anthropology, Whitman College; Margaret Byrne Swain is associate adjunct professor of women and gender studies, University of California, Davis. The other contributors are Magnus Fiskesjo, Paul Harris, He Jiangyu, Geng Jing, Jeff Kyong-McClain, Erk Mueggler, Alan Waxman, Paul Weissich, Tamara Wyss, and Alvin Yoshinaga.
Preface, Denise M. Glover

Introduction, Stevan Harrell

1. The Eyes of Others, Erik Mueggler
2. At Home in Two Worlds, Denise M. Glover
3. Searching for the "Lolos", Tamara Wyss
4. Classifying Joseph Rock, Alvin Yoshinaga et al.
5. Franc-Catholic Modernizer Paul Vial, Margaret B. Swain
6. David Crockett Graham, Charles F. McKhann and Alan Waxman
7. David Crocket Graham in Chinese Intellectual History, Jeff Kyong-McClain and Geng Jing
8. Science across Borders, Johan Gunnar Andersson and Ding Wenjiang


"The book is destined to become part of the standard readings for students of modern China."
-Jared M. Phillips, IIAS Newsletter, Summer 2013

"Scholarly and multifaceted. Recommended."
-Choice, June 2012

"As a collection of biographies, the authors have included the sort of details, first-person accounts, and photographs that make biography such a wonderful form of historical writing...Specialists and general readers with an interest in China's borderlands will find this book of value, above all, as a history of Western inquiry and adventure in the region."
-Gregory Rohlf, Asian Highlands Perspectives, Vol. 28

"....a very valuable contribution that advances our understanding of an unfairly neglected topic in the study of China's borderlands."
-Fa-Ti Fan, Journal of Asian Studies