Circuits of Power: China's Quest for Cable Telegraph Rights 1912-1945

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    This article examines China's efforts to restore cable telegraph rights from the establishment of the Republic of China to the end of World War II. Challenging the conventional dichotomy of Chinese and Western actors in rights recovery issues, this article explores the intricate power relations between foreign cable companies, international interests groups and various political factions in China. It analyses China's reclaim of cable sovereignty in three phases, each characterised by a particular controversy - the intra-clique struggle of the Communications Clique during the early Republic and the warlord era; the rivalry between the Nationalist Party, military and the state during the Nanjing decade; and the direct Sino-Japanese conflict during wartime. The article presents the argument that for the various interest groups, ideologies such as imperialism and nationalism served as rhetoric in their respective pursuits. It was the daily political tensions that played a crucial role in shaping how cable policies were devised. Copyright
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)113-135
    JournalJournal of Chinese History
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2019


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