The Military Collapse of China's Ming Dynasty, 1620-1644


American Research in the Humanities in China




I intend to take a fresh look at the military reasons for the fall of the Ming (1368-1644) dynasty, examining the events within their particular context, while also considering them within the broader field of comparative military history. While much attention in the English language scholarly literature has heretofore been focused upon the political and socio-economic factors behind the Ming fall, no Western author has seriously examined the Ming-Qing conflict from a military perspective. I will do this by making use of rare primary source materials such as diaries, memorial collections, and private and local histories. In the process I will also examine the nature of the relationship between Chinese emperors and their civil and military officials.