The settler urban landscape of a British concession: Victoria Park in Tianjin, China

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Archiving Settler Colonialism: Culture, Space and Race, 2019, pp. 49 - 66
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This chapter argues that the urban landscape in the British concession of Tianjin developed as a result of the dynamic exchange between British settlers and local sociopolitical events, and the concessions thus could be read as semi-colonial settled spaces. A close examination of Victoria Park, as this essay will show, sheds light on other settled spaces that were similar to the British concession in Tianjin, such as the foreign concessions in China; as well as other settler colonies in Australia, Canada, South Africa, and beyond. The chapter adopts the lens of settler-colonialism theories to examine how settler-colonial spaces functioned in the social and political context of a British concession. The settlers in the British concession formed a particular urban landscape that was distinct from that of Chinese society. An examination of Victoria Park using the lens of settler-colonial theory provides a new archive that reveals how public parks functioned as settler-colonial spaces.
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