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ISSN : 1229-9618(Print)
ISSN : 2671-7506(Online)
Chinese Studies Vol.71 pp.269-295

서양인의 눈에 비친 19세기 초 중국의 사회상 ― 『차이니스 레포지터리 The Chinese Repository』의 「잡록 Miscellanies」과 「사건일지 J ournal of Occurrences」를 중심으로

China's Social Image at the Beginning of 19th Century Reflected in the Eyes of Westerners : Focused on 「Miscellanies」 and 「Journal of Occurrences」 of 『The Chinese Repository』


Lee Bo-Go


This research observed China's social phenomenon, natural disaster, national function, regional news and figures reflected in the eyes of writers focusing on the contents presented in the 「Miscellanies」 and 「Journal of Occurrences」 of 『The Chinese Repository』. The articles of this material showed the micro-epic that configures the life of Chinese people and strangers in the boundary areas or contact areas by treating not a huge discourse narrative like the West Civilization Clash or the Modernity but the daily problems in a realistic manner by the missioners coming to in China. Of course, these micro epics reflected the realities at that time and contained the absurdity of Chinese society at the end of Qing Period, but while it contained the Orientalist exclusive possession in the eyes of missionaries targeting China naturally on the basis of modernity. Although they are those records fragmented in the material, but seeing it in the position of the Protestant Missionaries at that time, they are those stories that should be combined with the requirement of modernity inevitable in the process of reproducing the life aspects lively in China's region or boundary area at that time. Therefore, analyzing even in the description of case or accident, the contents of Old China's falling behind and pre-modernity discovered in the daily life are occupying, and each of them is displaying the role of stepping-stone in making the logical consequences that should let the narrative subjects modernize China more rapidly. Therefore, this research is also the intellectual experiment that reflects the side of grasping China's social image at that time in the eyes of stranger and the will of reconfiguring people's lifestyle through several micro epics. In 「Miscellanies」and 「Journal of Occurrences」, the cases agitating the existing system such as natural disaster or rebellion that the regional society continuously faced at that time are registered. However, these records did not only make the physical or quantitative description but also drew the social contradiction or the life of the vulnerable through the micro epic, and made the logics empowering the cause to promote the process of modernity requested to Chinese society. Superficially, it is the micro epic drawing the daily life around the inside of China, but its configuration and description were closely related to modern ideology of protestant missionaries. Therefore, this research tried to grasp the subtle tension between the micro epic configuring the work of 「Miscellanies」 and 「Journal of Occurrences」 and its internal ideology, and to ask a question how to read the locality of China expressed in their epics.