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The Beida-Tsinghua Connection: Yenching in the World of Beijing’s Elite Universities

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image of Journal of American-East Asian Relations

Yenching University did not exist in isolation but was part of several overlapping educational networks, international, national, sectarian, and local. Internationally, it was a modern Christian liberal arts university, comparable to Christian higher educational institutions in the United States and elsewhere in the world. Nationally, it was one of the colleges under the aegis of the United Board for Christian Higher Education in China and, more broadly, part of a modern higher educational network, centered in the large cities of eastern China. Locally, it was a component of a super-elite North China complex of higher education located in Beijing and Tianjin. This complex, as Yeh Wen-hsin has pointed out in her taxonomy of Republican-era higher education, stood in contrast with Guomindang universities such as National Central and Sun Yat-sen, as well as with teachers colleges, provincial universities, diploma mills, and other less renowned institutions.


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