'What is China?' This was the question posed nearly a hundred years ago by the Professor of Chinese at Cambridge, Herbert Giles, and it is equally valid today. China can seem remote and separate to people in the west; this stimulating and accessible history breaks down these barriers and makes sense of this complex and varied country. "China: A Modern History" illuminates the huge, scattered and diverse political world that is China. Drawing on his extensive research and a wide range of original Chinese sources, Dillon explores how the country's many different communities have a myriad of histories and traditions, races and ethnicities, religions (or none) and languages, but still share some sense of overarching Chinese identity, reaching out to Russia, the Caucasus and Japan and much of Asia. China has been defined by the rise and fall of empires. This comprehensive political history places China's development from the 19th century to its present status as a regional and even world economic superpower in its historical and international context.
Weaving together the central themes of social, economic, religious and cultural history, "China: A Modern History" is a full narrative history with many original ideas and insights.