Houghton Mifflin Textbook -
InstructorsStudentsReviewersAuthorsBooksellers Contact Us
Textbook Site for:
History WIRED

The Ottoman Empire and East Asia, 1800-1870

Maps The Ottoman borders in the period of Selim III

The Ottoman borders in the time of Mahmud II

The Ottoman Empire
This map demonstrates the growth and decline of the Ottoman Empire from the fourteenth through the twentieth century.

The Crimean War
This site offers a map of the war as it occurred on the Crimean Peninsula.

Crimean War
This comprehensive site offers maps of all major fronts and battles. Click on the links in the chronology to find the maps.

Fire and Fiasco: The Crimean War
This site provides a map of troop movements and major battles in the Black Sea area during the Crimean War.

Plan of the Siege of Sevastopol
Click on the map for a larger image of this important battle of the Crimean War.

East Asia, circa 1800

China and the World
This map places China and East Asia in a global context.

The Qing Dynasty

Map Showing the Effects of Western Imperialism in China


Portrait of Selim III

Portrait of Mahmud II

Concept of Westernization and the Role of Foreign Architects in 19th Century Ottoman

This essay includes several images.

The Crimean War Picture Gallery

Portrait of Florence Nightingale

The Kerry Recruit
Click on the image to hear a British song from the Crimean War period.

Chinese Cultural Studies: Images
This comprehensive site includes several images from nineteenth-century China.

Old Tientsin, Modern Tianjin
View several nineteenth century photographs of this Chinese treaty port.

in Nineteenth-Century China

These lectures include numerous images from the time.

The City and the World Economy
This site offers many Chinese depictions of Westerners and allows you to explore this period of Western intrusion through Chinese eyes.

Images of Meiji Era Japan

Museum Meiji-Mura Field I
View several images of Japanese architecture during the Meiji Restoration. Note the influence of Western concepts.

Imaging Meiji: Emporer and Era 1868-1972 (Japanese Woodblock Prints from the Collection of Jean S. And Frederic A. Sharf

Activity One:

This chapter explores the increasingly complex relations between the maritime-based and rapidly industrializing nations Western Europe and the United States and three land-based empires in Asia: the Ottoman Empire, the Qing Empire, and the Tokugawa Shogunate.

During the early and middle nineteenth century, the level of interaction, particularly that related to commercial activity, increased. Western maritimepowers especially wished to increase their access to these large Eastern markets. After the 1840s, many new arrangements emerged to facilitate this East-West commerce. To learn more about these new arrangements, read Treaty of Commerce and Navigation Between the United States and the Ottoman Empire;February 25, 1862 and The Treaty of Amity and Commerce Between the United States and Japan, 1858 (The Harris Treaty).

While reviewing these documents,search for aspects that made these treaties "unfair" or "unequal." For example,consider what kinds of goods the United States had to offer the Ottoman Empire and Japan and vice versa? If free trade existed between the United States and these other kingdoms, which stood to benefit?

Which countries gained from the increased shipping that would accompany greater commercial activity? In what other ways would the United States benefit disproportionately from these treaties? Why do you think that the Ottoman Empire and the Japanese Shogunate signed on to these agreements? Why was the United States willing to exploit its advantages over these two nations? Using these two treaties as an example, how would you describe the new diplomatic and economic arrangements between the Western maritime powers and the Eastern land-based empires toward the end of the nineteenth century? How did these agreements compare with those negotiated by these nations at the beginning of the century, and what factors accounted for this change?

Activity Two:

The increased leverage that the maritime powers possessed when dealing with the land-based empires of Asia not only gave Western merchants greater access to Eastern markets; it also allowed Western Christian missionaries greater freedom to proselytize in these lands.

This activity was most pronounced in China. To analyze this development, go to Christianity in Nineteenth-Century China. Review all four lectures at this site, paying special attention to the images provided. How did Western missionaries gain greater access to the Chinese population during the nineteenth century, and what impact did they have on China? In other words, did they gain significant numbers of converts? Did they succeed in exposing the Chinese to other aspects of Western culture besides religion? How were Western missionaries regarded by the Chinese?
(Be sure to consider both positive and negative reactions in your response.) How did the missionaries view the Chinese? Since the missionaries continually maintained contact with their home societies, how do you think the attitudes about China that they transmitted to the West shaped Western perceptions of China during the nineteenth century? Explain what these perceptions might have been by referring to the sources you have analyzed for this activity.

Activity Three:

Increased contact, whether through merchants or missionaries,also helped to shape Asians' attitudes toward the West. For example, the new treaty ports of China that multiplied throughout the century after the first Opium War were prime conduits of cultural exchange.

What impressions did the Chinese form of the West through these "laboratories"? To answer this question, study the images presented at The City and the World Economy. (Click on documents 1 through 5 toview the images. Be sure to read the translations of the text in each image at the bottom of the page.) After studying these illustrations, do you have the sense that the Chinese viewed themselves as being inferior to Westerners? Which aspects of Western culture did the creators of these illustrations criticize? Do these images suggest that contact with Westerners was challenging or reinforcing Confucian values among the Chinese?

Activity Four:

As the illustrations in Activity Three suggest, there was no stampede to embrace Western values and cultures among the peoples of the Ottoman Empire, Qing Empire, and Tokugawa Shogunate.

Nevertheless, all three governments sought to emulate the West at some point during the century. To understand this contradiction, read the documents at Proposals for Self Strengthening and Observations of Ii Naosuke, Lord (daimyo) of Hakone, Oct. 1853.

Next, read Westernizing Reformers.

Why did reformers in all three of the Eastern empires wish to emulate the West? What particular aspects of Western culture did they want to adopt? Do you think that these advocates of reform wanted to completely transform their countries into Western-style powers, or did they wish to preserve much of their own cultures and traditions? What Western developments that had occurred during the past century most inspired these reformers--the revolution in political thought or the Industrial Revolution? Do you believe that these Asian powers could embrace the technological aspects of the West while simultaneously rejecting the political values that prevailed in the West during the nineteenth century? The dilemma posed by this situation would continues to cause major tensions in these Eastern societies today.