Race, Law, and “The Chinese Puzzle” in Imperial Britain

  • Authors
  • Sascha Auerbach

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Sascha Auerbach
    Pages 1-14
  3. Sascha Auerbach
    Pages 51-88
  4. Sascha Auerbach
    Pages 123-149
  5. Sascha Auerbach
    Pages 185-192
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 193-268

About this book


In the early twentieth century, Chinese immigration became the focal point for racial panic in Britain. Fears about its moral and economic impact - amplified by press sensationalism and lurid fictional portrayals of London's original 'Chinatown' as a den of vice and iniquity - prompted mass arrests, deportations, and mob violence. Even after the neighborhood was demolished and its inhabitants dispersed, the stereotype of the Chinese criminal mastermind and other 'yellow peril' images remained as permanent aspects of British culture. This painstakingly researched study traces the historical evolution of Chinese communities in Britain during this period, revealing their significance in the development of race as a category in British culture, law, and politics.


Britain China Chinese discourse dynamics empire gender Great Britain law migrant migrants Orient play Polis

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Nature America Inc. 2009
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, New York
  • eBook Packages Palgrave History Collection
  • Print ISBN 978-1-349-37603-2
  • Online ISBN 978-0-230-62092-6
  • Buy this book on publisher's site