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Open Access Routine Promotions: Li Hu and the Dusty Byways of Empire

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Routine Promotions: Li Hu and the Dusty Byways of Empire

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Chapter Summary

This chapter shows the biographies of officials prepared by the State Historiographical Commission, and provides a view of the logic of official careers in China. It particularly discusses the career of Li Hu. His career was not entirely typical nor unique, but significant in its length. It is possible to trace his ascent from the first magistracy he was assigned in 1748 at the age of 33, until he died in his last posting as governor of Guangdong Province in 1785. The chapter focuses on the first twenty-three years of his career, when he rose from the rank of magistrate to provincial governor, broadly exploring the issue of how an eighteenth-century empire chose its agents. It argues that the eighteenth-century Qing state favoured officials with general rather than specialised knowledge. Finally, the chapter shows how the central government used the circulation of officials to solve specific regional problems.

Keywords: Guangdong Province; Li Hu; Qing state; State Historiographical Commission

10.1163/9789004272095_006
/content/books/b9789004272095_006
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