Tianjin sales of land by auctions: Italian Colonialism in the early twentieth century China

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s a signatory to the Boxer Protocol in 1901, Italy came into possession of the Tianjin concession, its only colonial possession in China. The Italian settlement was situated on the Hai River, and most of the land consisted of cemeteries and salt deposits. Italian administration of the settlement encountered many difficulties. Expropriation of land from the Chinese occupants was not easy, and it proved equally difficult to attract Italian investors. However despite the fact that Italian public opinion supported the abandonment of the concession, the Italian government was ultimately obliged to undertake a project for its urban development. Success in Tianjin became a national challenge for Italy, with the National Trust providing the necessary economic support. The history of the Italian settlement in Tianjin therefore sheds light on the politics of colonialism and on Italy's economic and political agendas at the turn of the twentieth century.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)557-572
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Modern Italian Studies
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • China
  • history
  • Italy
  • international relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History


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