Cornhill Magazine,  2 (1860), 432–37.

Chinese Pirates

[Edward Townsend]




Ethnography, Race, Imperialism, Morality, Steamships, Military Technology, Progress, Adulteration

    Describes the instinctual cowardice, avarice and criminality of the Chinese people, which means that 'you cannot easily persuade a Chinese that there is anything objectionable in piracy' (435). In that vast country 'There are so many mouths to feed that human life is a drug in the market, and every man's head [...] sits loosely on his shoulders' (436). The deceitful cunning of Chinese pirates, however, cannot overcome the steam-powered might of 'an English cruiser'. In any battle 'Discipline, race, and civilization are too much for fierceness and greed [...] the deep British cheer rising louder and clearer over the yells of the savages'. (435)

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