Beijing: From Imperial Capital to Olympic City: From Imperial Capital to Olympic City

Paperback | April 29, 2008

byLillian Li, Alison Dray-novey, Haili Kong

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Few world cities have a record as long, as fascinating, or as well-documented as Beijing's. A capital almost continuously for more than a thousand years, the city has been Khubilai Khan's Mongol headquarters, home to emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties, and the main stage for Communist-era achievements and upheavals. Beijing is the first book in English to trace this vibrant city's history from its earliest days to the present. It highlights recent changes in the city as its more than fifteen million people live through record-level economic growth and intensive preparations for the 2008 Olympics. Focusing on the lives of ordinary residents and rulers alike, the authors examine the controversial destruction of historic districts as well as the construction of new residential and business districts and Olympic venues. Extensive photographs and paintings, many not previously published, offer a window onto Beijing not only in major phases of its past, but also in its startlingly different present. Compelling and revealing, Beijing arrives just in time for the city's turn in the Olympic spotlight.

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From the Publisher

Few world cities have a record as long, as fascinating, or as well-documented as Beijing's. A capital almost continuously for more than a thousand years, the city has been Khubilai Khan's Mongol headquarters, home to emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties, and the main stage for Communist-era achievements and upheavals. Beijing is the...

Lillian M. Li is Professor of History, Swarthmore College. Alison J. Dray-Novey is Professor of History, College of Notre Dame of Maryland. Haili Kong is Professor of Chinese Language, Literature, and Film, Swarthmore College.

other books by Lillian Li

Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.82 inPublished:April 29, 2008Publisher:St. Martin's PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230605273

ISBN - 13:9780230605275

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Table of Contents

The Emergence of Beijing as an Imperial Capital * The Forbidden City and the Qing Emperors * Daily Life in the Inner and Outer Cities * The City Besieged and the Last Emperors * "Old Beijing" and Republican China * Mao's Capital and Socialist Transformation * Economic Reform and Cultural Fever * Beijing Boom, Urban Crisis, and the Olympic City * Conclusion: Preserving the Past: The City as Museum and Showcase

Editorial Reviews

"This is a timely publication, appropriate for the serious reader who would like to understand the social history of Beijing and get an insight into some of its contemporary urban problems. . .The book is well written and will engage the inquisitive reader." -Jeffrey F. Meyer, China Review International"In an engaging style and enlightening narrative, Beijing: From Imperial Capital to Olympic City, tells the fascinating story of how Beijing...made the transition from China's most enduring imperial capital to a center of international commerce in the twenty-first century, as well as the site of the 2008 World Olympics." -Merle Goldman, Professor Emerita of Chinese History, Boston University, and co-author of An Intellectual History of Modern China"This book is a unique excursion through a great past and present, neither misleading the beginner nor disappointing the expert. Indeed, the combination of lucidity, conciseness and deft selection of detail is an amazing accomplishment. The city of Beijing is brilliantly conjured by this book--in time, in space, in humanity, and in significance." -Pamela Kyle Crossley, Professor of History, Dartmouth College, and author of The Manchus (1997) and co-author of Global Society: The World since 1900 (2007)"Useful and applicable to all levels... Recommended." -CHOICE"A treat even for the lay reader." -Simon Kuper, Author of Football Against the Enemy