Synopsis by Nathan Southern
This ambitious documentary explores the vast differences between Western culture - exemplified by Britain and the United States - and Eastern culture, illustrated by China. The program rests on the thesis that such differences have existed from the very beginnings of time. Part One of the bipartite documentary examines the ways in which Christianity and Confucianism evolved into contemporary political ideology and social structures; the installment then looks at the reasons for the failure of the Industrial Revolution to materialize in China as it did in Europe - a particularly baffling enigma given the many ingenious inventions from Chinese antiquity. Part Two of the documentary investigates early economic and military clashes between the British and Chinese Empires, especially as manifest in the 1800s - a bloody and shameful century marred by war threats, trade deficits and other calamities.
Britain, Christianity, Confucianism, culture [social culture], empire, politics, United-States