How should we understand China’s extraordinary rise in historical terms? How and why has the great renewal of the Chinese nation come about? Klaus Mühlhahn, one of the world’s leading historians of modern China, seeks to answer these questions in Making China Modern: From the Great Qing to Xi Jinping (The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2019). The book establishes an up-to-date, profound and comprehensive understanding of China’s modern trajectory. In this reconsideration of Chinese history, Mühlhahn starts with the reign of the Qing dynasty in 1644 during which many core institutions of late imperial China developed and the empire reached its pinnacle. Focusing on the broad and complex transformation of Chinese society and its institutions through centuries of war and rebellion, disease and famine, the book attributes China’s rise to its long history of creative adaptation and a dynamic legacy of overcoming adversity and weakness. Join us to gain a new understanding of China’s progress and challenges. Reading will average 45 or more pages a week; active class participation is expected.