ENGLISH "BOXER REBELLION" OFFERS NEAR COMPLETE PICTURE
(10/15/2001) (chinadaily.com.cn)


Photo in the book, "The Boxer Rebellion", the largest fully illustrated account of China's Boxer uprising written by a foreigner, was recently jointly published by the China National Publications Import and Export Corporation and the Europrint Publishing House based in Quinto di Treviso, Italy. The 352-page book in English is the first volume of a Chinese history series written by Adriano Màdaro, an Italian journalist and writer, who has made over 90 trips to China, some of which took him deep into the country's most remote regions, including Inner Mongolia and the Tibet Autonomous Region. In the book, Màdaro presents a new, unbiased look at the 55-day seige of Beijing's Foreign Legations Quarter by a xenophobic revolutionary movement encouraged by the Manchu Court. Drawing from documents contained in the "diplomatic bag" of the Italian minister of that time- the marquis Giuseppe Salvago-Raggi, who witnessed the seige with his wife - the author has put together an enthralling historical account with vast, invaluable and hitherto mostly unpublished photographic evidence. Màdaro's studies raise some interesting questions about the Boxer Rebellion: Who were the Boxers? What were the true roles of the foreign powers then present in China, some of whom were responsible for violent military attacks against Qing provinces? In whose interest was it to cause riots, culminating in the assassination of the German minister, whose death was strangely announced five days beforehand by the British press? Although he does not have enough evidence to answer these questions, Màdaro hopes by asking them he can open up new doors that might lead to a better understanding of the history of modern China. The other six books, still to be published, are tentatively titled "China As Seen By Westerners: 1700-1800," "Peking Between 1800-1900," "The Heavenly Empire," "Walls and Monument of Old Peking," "Life In Old Peking" and "Peking Early Twentieth Century." Together they will attempt to depict the construction of old Beijing and the life of its inhabitants with illustrations, photos, paintings and engraving, according to Màdaro.