By W. G. Goddard
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Extra resources for Formosa: A Study in Chinese History
Physical possession was out of the question . That was the way of the barbarian, the uncivilized. This attitude of the literati was not just a negative approach. The physical conquest of newly-discovered lands was ruled out, not only for economic reasons as 'costly' and philosophical reasons as ' useless', but because another policy, of a positive character, was preferable. They sought for and discovered this in China's past. This was the doctrine of tsung chu ch'uan, which had bound together the different states in the time of Chou.
There was an explanation of this official attitude over the centuries. During the Sui Dynasty (589-618) the constant threat of invasion from the north-west diverted attention from discoveries in the Eastern Sea; the T'angs (618-905), in spite of their great achievements at horne, were strongly opposed to migration from China, and even when famine and political chaos rent the country in the closing years of the dynasty, prohibition of migration was enforced with Draconie severity ; the Sungs in north China (900-1126) could not afford to take their attention from the menace in the north as the shadow of the Mongol became more and more ominous, and later, in south China (1127-1278), they had to fight for their very existence; then, as for the Mongols, who controlled all China (1279-1368), their time and energy were fully occupied in futile attempts to impose their rule on a resisting people, who rernained throughout loyal to Sung ideals.
These were not tribal or ethnological terms, but purely indications of adoption or rejeetion of Chinese standards and customs. The ever-present fear of attack created among the Hakkas a much greater degree of unity than was the case with the Hoklos. They were compelled by circumstances to form a common front, and this took the form of villages in which many families lived. This emergence of village life as distinct from clan life was the first step towards F ormosan nationhood. It was born in the hills, in marked contrast to the feuds and rivalries which were already dividing the Hoklos in the west and which were to have a marked influence in the future of Formosa.