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The Chinese Looking Glass by Dennis…

The Chinese Looking Glass (1967)

by Dennis Bloodworth, Dennis Bloodworth

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Searching for books about China that reveal otherwise unknown facts and details about the people and there past, I came across "The Chinese Looking Glass" at a local book sale. This documentary was written in 1967 when Mr. Bloodworth was a correspondent for the London "Observer". He was married to a Chinese woman with whom he adopted three Chinese children. Bloodworth wrote from his first-hand experiences and invaluable access to a vast collection of resources (all cited in the Bibliography).

Dropping back 3000 years this book tells the story of China: the dynasties, the wars, the customs, the accepted religions, the philosophy of Confucius, the justice system, and the inventions credited to their advanced civilization which included gun powder, silk, porcelain, herbal remedies, acupuncture, the counting system, paper money and treasury notes, the banking system, the compass, paper and printing, and photography…just to name a few. The Chinese Looking Glass includes lots of trivial facts. For example, the first encyclopedia was written in the year 1005. And who knew the Free Masons were founded 400 years before Christ was born. Mr. Bloodworth does a good job of explaining the evolution of
China’s political history: how the Communist party was formed in 1921, and how Mao came to power. Through his observations it is easy to see how the Chinese culture rendered an accessible transition to the new communist regulations.

"The Chinese Looking Glass" is an earlier reference book for Chinese history, but is sorely outdated for current conditions of economics, politics, religion, and cultural modernization. It is an understatement to say alot has happened in China since 1967. At that time it was believed that Chairman Mao’s “Great Leap Forward” was a huge success. Little did the public know that his radical progressive idea of agricultural collectivization would result in millions of deaths caused by starvation.

One of the most illuminating discoveries is how resilient, patient, and stoic the Chinese are by nature.
If you have a curiosity about ancient China and can get your hands on a copy of "The Chinese Looking Glass"…it is certainly a worthwhile investment. It does not contain all the details about any one subject, but is a 418 page compact version of China’s 3000 years of recorded history. ( )
2 vote LadyLo | Jul 14, 2011 |
Bloodworth was the Observer's Asian correspondent in the 1960s. This is his take on China, smart and witty. ( )
  Fledgist | Nov 23, 2007 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dennis Bloodworthprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bloodworth, Dennismain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Over 3,000 years of Chinese history and culture are covered in this volume.

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