The Expeditions of Zheng He

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The history of the expeditions by Zheng He, the Chinese explorer who has been considered for long as a representative of the imperial history of China, is presented positively by the Communist Party at present. The most underlying reason for this has been, in the words of several critics, "to give rising China a new image on the world stage." (Kahn) The chief motive behind several books and television shows on Zheng He, models of his ships, and the $50 million museum in Nanjing has been to present him as a naval cultural ambassador of China and to give the nation an image of a dominant but fervently peaceful country…

Introduction


However, the Chinese efforts to present a one sided interpretation of the explorer cannot be justified in this modern age of improved international cooperation among the world nations. It would be more advantageous for every nation to provide factual evidences to historical events and China, certainly, needs to present the objective facts in their attempt to make a better image of their fast. Historical facts and figures cannot be misinterpreted by any nation for its vested interest as there is no monopoly for any particular individual or nation over the truths of the past. The present criticisms by several intellectuals of the various parts of the world against the Chinese efforts to present a one sided interpretation of Zheng He indicates the same. In conclusion, while China has every right to have a pleasing image about its present and past, this cannot be at the cost of historical facts.
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