The Art of being an Imperial Broker: The Qing Conquest of Taiwan and Maritime Society (1624-1788) Open Access

Lu, Cheng-Heng (Fall 2020)

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Whether Taiwan is part of China remains a crucial question. In the Chinese nationalistic description, the Qing Empire’s (1644-1911) conquest of Taiwan was a process of unification of the Chinese nation-state. This interpretation is influenced by a nationalistic perspective. In this dissertation I use the lens of imperial and global perspective to review this subjugation as an imperial expansion rather than a national unification. Instead of focusing on either the aspect of empire or the aspect of society, I explore the history by analyzing the acts of four families: the Zheng lineage of Zheng Chenggong, the Shi lineage of Shi Lang, the Huang lineage of Huang Wu, and the Lan lineage of Lan Li. These four families were kaituoxunchen, who had naval skills and maritime knowledge that were unfamiliar for the Qing ruling class. They became the Qing Empire’s cultural and military brokers in the maritime borderland and helped the Qing conquer Taiwan and gain knowledge of the maritime world. These families earned benefits by being brokers in the local society. The maritime society needed to negotiate with these newly rising influential brokers and to recognize their status to guarantee local people’s benefits. Meanwhile, each side encountered dilemmas. To ensure the brokers’ loyalty, the empire enrolled them in the Eight Banners system and the Mongolian prince system, which were Inner Asian systems to build subjects with a close relationship to the Manchu rulers. This created unintentional impacts on these four families that they had gradually engaged with Inner Asian cultures and phenomena instead of the maritime world. Although the four families had successfully conquered Taiwan in 1683 and 1721, they failed to conquer it in 1787. Their roles were superseded by Manchu generals in 1788. Therefore, the brokers and the brokerage system they had built with their empire declined, and the Manchu took the dominant roles. I explore the Qing’s conquest and expedition and the relative impacts on maritime societies in 1661, 1683, 1721, and 1788 from the perspectives of global, imperial, and social history and argues that the Qing Empire began its direct rule in Taiwan after 1788.

Table of Contents

1    Introduction 1

1.1 Introduction 1

1.2 Historiography 6

1.3 Thesis and Chapter structure 24

2    The Setting: Southern Fujian and Taiwan 33

2.1 Introduction 33

2.2 The Sandwiched Structure: Core-periphery in Southern Fujian 34

2.3 Where Should They Go after the Lineage and State Encroachment? “Pirates” Assemble. 49

2.4 Imperially Connected Zone: The Middle Ground of Taiwan 56

2.5 Conclusion 65

3    The First Maritime Broker, Zheng Zhilong, and His Model 67

3.1 Introduction 67

3.2 A Northern-frontier System in Maritime Borderland: Fu yi guan 68

3.3 From the External World to Internal Society 76

3.4 Conclusion 84

4    Replicable Brokerage: The Competition for Brokerage and Qing’s Broker—Huang Wu 86

4.1 Introduction 86

4.2 The Competition for Brokerage 88

4.3 The Qing’s “Man Friday”: Huang Wu 99

4.4 Conclusion 109

5    Another Side (1661–1683) 112

5.1 Introduction 112

5.2 The New-rising Maritime Brokers 113

5.3 The Debate between Manchus and Brokers 123

5.4 The Pause of Brokerage 132

5.5 Conclusion 142

6    Shi Lang’s Conquest of 1683 and His Maritime Brokerage 145

6.1 Introduction 145

6.2 Shi Lang’s Conquest of Taiwan in 1683 147

6.3 Kai tuo xun chen’s Social Transformation, Policymaking, and Colonial Enterprises 156

6.4 Brokerage in 1696: Lineage Organization and Eight Banners System 168

6.5 Conclusion 177

7    The Second Conquest, a Debate, and Growing Power Brokerage 180

7.1 Introduction 180

7.2 The Second Generation of kai tuo xun chen: Shi Shibiao 182

7.3 Zhu Yigui’s Rebellion and the Second Conquest 189

7.4 The Debate between Manchu and Kai tuo xun chen 195

7.5 How Colonial Enterprises Benefited from Policymaking 202

7.6 Conclusion 210

8    Bureaucratization and Reactivation of Brokerage 212

8.1 Introduction 212

8.2 Bureaucratized Fujian Naval Admiral 213

8.3 Manchu Identity Crisis and Manchurized Brokers 219

8.4 Reactivating Brokerage: Huang Shijian 227

8.5 Conclusion 238

9    The Manchu Conquest of Taiwan and the End of Brokerage 240

9.1 Introduction 240

9.2 Lin Shuangwen Rebellion and the Brokers’ Failure 242

9.3 The Manchu Conquest of Taiwan and Empire-building 248

9.4 The End of Brokerage 268

9.5 Conclusion 274

10  Epilogue and Conclusion 276

11   Bibliography 292

A. Premodern Gazetteers 292

B. Genealogies 293

C. Inscriptions 294

D. Other Premodern Chinese Sources 295

E. Unpublished Archive 298

F. Manchu-language Sources 299

F. Japanese Sources 299

G. Other References 299

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