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Chapter Summary

This chapter traces local scientists' deployment of language, sociability, and publications first to enroll outsiders in their cosmopolitan vision of Chinese geology and then to carve out a "private" sphere for domestic debate. Chinese scientific activity took many different forms, but whether these involved translation, domestic industry, academic laboratories, or fieldwork, expertise and authenticity were common preoccupations, and mastery of science mattered. While many arguments have been made about the suitability of Chinese as a scientific language, this supposed failure was not the result of any fatal linguistic flaw but of the power dynamics of the international scientific community in the early twentieth century. The full scientific results of Zhang Hongzhao's undergraduate thesis, which marked the first extensive geological fieldwork conducted in China by a Chinese researcher. Indeed, much of the success of the Bulletin of the Geological Society of China hinged on the decision to publish in Western-scientific languages.

Keywords: Chinese geology; Geological Bulletin; Geological Society of China; international scientific community; western-scientific languages; Zhang Hongzhao

10.1163/9789004268784_012
/content/books/b9789004268784_012
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