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Colonial Science: An Introduction

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Chapter Summary

Those who speak about 'colonial science' start with George Basalla's paper in 1967. The major criticism was addressed to George's developmentalism, without recourse to the political and economical differences of colonial areas. This chapter proposes a functional definition of colonial science as the following: my definition of colonial science is that subjectively, or internally speaking, it is a science conducted by scientists who envisaged achieving whatever they could not accomplish at home but only in a colonial setting. From the modernization point of view, Japanese historians of science worked hard on the mechanism of modernization from the demand-side point-of-view. During the post-war period right after the end of the Second World War, Marxist historiography of wartime science was dominant. In contrast to the above-stated classical colonial science, the author considers the Sino-Japanese relationship in our Beijing Conference.

Keywords: Beijing Conference; colonial science; Marxist historiography; Second World War; Sino-Japanese relationship



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