China Station

Ref: C2226777

From the First Opium War in 1839 to the Yangtze Incident in 1949, this fascinating course presents the history of how Britain used military power to forcibly open Imperial China to trade, and how Britain remained the dominating force in Chinese affairs until World War II. From the dying days of the Qing Dynasty, through warlords and Republicans to the dawn of Communism, this course charts Britain's military history in the Middle Kingdom right up until the handover of Hong Kong in 1997. The course events continue to resonate today in relations between China and Britain.

Additional information about this course

Half term 24/10/2019

Course aim

This course introduces students to the modern history of China from the perspective of British expansionism and conflict during the 19th and 20th centuries.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Outline how Britain used military power to open up China
  • Discuss the individual campaigns and events that form the history
  • Identify the historical forces at work during this period
  • Examine the Chinese perspective on this complex period of history
  • Discuss the impact of Britain on China and that legacy today

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course

Download full course information sheet

China Station


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2019
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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