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I. Pénaliser l'espace – Penalizing Space

The Law and the “Law”: Two Kinds of Legal Space in Late-Qing China

La Loi et la « loi » : deux genres d’espace juridique dans la Chine des Qing
法(Law)與治法:晚清中國的两種法律空間
Eric Schluessel
p. 39-58

Abstracts

This article concerns the conceptualization and implementation of a new imaginary of law and geography in nineteenth-century China. In the first half of the nineteenth century, members of the statecraft (jingshi) school of thought adopted an idea of “law” that contrasted codified law with what they conceived of as natural socio-moral norms. That dichotomy explained for them the geographical contraction of Chinese society, the rise of Inner Asian dynasties, and the potential for China to expand once again. The Taiping war provided an opportunity for members of this group to put these ideas into practice by strategically suspending imperial law in favor of official activism in order to bring about more ideal social conditions. From the 1870s onward, this group worked to transform the Inner Asian territory of Xinjiang into a province. That process illustrates the contradictions in this statecraft conception of law.

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Text / excerpt

Cairn

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Outline

Origins of the Statecraft Legal and Geographical Imaginary
Execution-on-the-Spot
Law Without Law in Xinjiang
Interpretations

Text / first lines

The Qing (1636-1911) produced a substantial corpus of codified law that served to routinize many of the imperial government’s tasks in maintaining peace and social order, among them the procedure for prosecuting and executing subjects found to have committed capital crimes. Early in the empire’s development, however, certain Ming loyalists articulated an ideological stance against codified law together with their anti-Manchuism. One, Huang Zongxi, wrote of Qing codified law and Chinese codified moralism as opposing varieties of “law” (fa). In the 1840s, his writings and those of his contemporaries inspired members of the “statecraft” (jingshi) school to articulate a new imaginary of chaos, according to which expanding the geographical reach of moralism at the expense of codified law was necessary to bringing order to the world. I will argue here that the crises of the mid-nineteenth century provided an opportunity for this group to implement policies that carved out a new geography ...

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References

Electronic reference

Eric Schluessel, « The Law and the “Law”: Two Kinds of Legal Space in Late-Qing China », Extrême-Orient Extrême-Occident [Online], 40 | 2016, Online since 21 November 2018, connection on 21 November 2017. URL : http://extremeorient.revues.org/603

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About the author

Eric Schluessel

Assistant Professor at the University of Montana, Departments of History and Political Science. PhD in History and East Asian Languages from Harvard University (2016). MA in Central Eurasian Studies from Indiana University (2007). His research focuses on the social and cultural history of Xinjiang in the Qing and twentieth century. Some recent works : The World as Seen from Yarkand : Ghulām Muḥammad Khān’s 1920s Chronicle Mā Tīṭayniŋ wāqi‘asi (Tokyo : NIHU Program Islamic Area Studies, 2014) ; “Language and the State in Late-Qing Xinjiang”, in Birgit Schlyter and Mirja Juntunen (eds.), Historiography and Nation-Building Among Turkic Populations (Istanbul : Swedish Research Institute in Istanbul, 2014).
Professeur assistant au Département d’histoire et de science politique de l’Université du Montana. Docteur en histoire et langues d’Asie orientale de l’Université Harvard (2016) et Master en études centre asiatiques de l’Université de l’Indiana (2007). Ses travaux portent sur l’histoire sociale et culturelle du Xinjiang à l’époque des Qing et au xxe siècle. Parmi ses travaux récents : The World as Seen from Yarkand : Ghulām Muḥammad Khān’s 1920s Chronicle Mā Tīṭayniŋ wāqiʿasi (Tokyo : NIHU Program Islamic Area Studies, 2014) ; « Language and the State in Late-Qing Xinjiang », in Birgit Schlyter and Mirja Juntunen (dir.), Historiography and Nation-Building Among Turkic Populations (Istanbul : Swedish

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Copyright

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