Ralph Townsend - Ways that are dark


Ralph Townsend - Ways that are dark
The truth about China

Ways that are dark : The truth about China is a 1933 non-fiction book by Ralph Townsend which presents Townsend's observations on the state of then-contemporary China. The book is considered an anti-Chinese polemic by scholars.

A harsh critique of Chinese society and culture, Ways that are dark was written at a time when China was in the grip of considerable civil strife. Townsend claimed that the source of China's problems lay in fundamental defects in the ethnic characteristics of the Chinese people. Although the book was a bestseller in the United States, it met with highly polarized reactions from its supporters and detractors..
Though praised by some periodicals, it was denounced by missionaries and sinologists, including Owen Lattimore who condemned it as "a general indictment of a whole race". It was banned by the government of China.

After World War II, the book fell into obscurity. It was reprinted in 1997 by the white nationalist publisher Barnes Review and subsequently gained renewed popularity in Japan in 2004 when a Japanese translation was published.

Ways that are dark is based on its author's experience of living in China for more than one year. Townsend had worked as a journalist and educator in New York before joining the United States Foreign Service on 16 December 1930. He served as a vice-consul in Shanghai between 10 December 1931 and 9 January 1932 and then in Fuzhou until 1 March 1933. The book was released on 10 November 1933 by G. P. Putnam's Sons.

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