32 Dong Chen
The term ‘Chinese Threat’ has not been a novel wording for the past twenty years.
Its references date as far back to the nineteenth century, e.g., in Mikhail Bakunin’s
work entitled “On Statism and Anarchism,” which implies the “tremendous and
dreadful threat from the East.”
Wilhelm II von Deutschland’s vivid cartoon “The
Yellow Peril” (Völker Europas, wahrt eure heiligsten Güter) depicted a common
European perception of China at the turn of the nineteenth century. (Figure 1)
Figure 1: Wilhelm II von Deutschland’s vivid cartoon “The Yellow Peril”
When western and Chinese Christians were killed in China during the Boxer
the Eight-Power allied expeditionary force
invaded China and imposed
treaty terms, including a cash indemnity and grants for further occupation rights
of western powers. The core of the ‘Yellow Peril’ theory lay in the fact that some
Europeans regarded yellow-faced Chinese as ‘uncivilized’ and stupid locusts
causing great, albeit potential, threats to the ‘civilized (western)’ world.
“The Yellow Peril” was reprised from about the mid-1990’s through present,
with western politicians and scholars giving voice to the so-called ‘Chinese Threat’.
1 Mikhail Alexandrovich Bakunin (Russian: Михаил Александрович Бакунин, 1814-1876) is considered the most
influential figures of anarchism, and one of the principal founders of the ‘social anarchist’ tradition. See M. Bakunin,
On StatiSM and anarchiSM (trans. into Chinese, Commercial Press, 2013). For details on the idea of “the Yellow
Peril,” see An Chen, “Chinese Threat”: Sources, Essence of “Yellow Peril” and the Newest Hegemonic varieties, 33
MOd LegaL Sci. (Xiandai Faxue) 10-36 (2011).
2 See the introduction of ‘Yellow Peril’ <available only in Chinese>, in the Baidu encycLOpedia, available at http://
tOFcHjFqTWthaQBDHTbevq (last visited on May 6, 2014). Prof. An Chen simplified the “Yellow Peril Theory of
Russian and German style.” See An Chen, supra note 1.
3 See generally J. eSherick, the OriginS Of the BOxer upriSing (1988).
4 This force consisted of France, Britain, the US, Japan, Russia, Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy.
2014-05-23 오후 2:07:15