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Synopsis

Part of the prestigious academic book series Documenting the Image, this is a fascinating survey illustrated by extremely rare photographs of the burned architectural and landscape complex known as the Rape of the Summer Palace.
In 1860, Western armies brought ruin to the treasured seat of the Qing emperors near Beijing. One hundred and fifty images have been collected to date as a support for an extensive study of the building of the palaces and their subsequent destruction.
This book is a rigourous analysis of the work and experiences of the European photographers, both amateur and professional, working in Beijing during this period, and, as such, becomes an account of the development of photography itself. Offering a fascinating glimpse into 19th-Century China, the book gives an historical overview of the political situation.

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