The Low-Rodgers Expedition: a study in the foundations of U.S. policy in Korea
George, Douglas Edward
Buss, Claude A.
Olsen, Edward A.
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This thesis reveals the origin and significance of the Low-Rodgers Expedition of 1871 in the evolution of a conscious foreign policy of the United States in East Asia. It deals with the Low-Rodgers Expedition not as an isolated event, but as both an outcome and antecedent of other closely interrelated events in an unbroken time continuum. Concentrating on the fundamental regional issues of the times and the national character and interests of the United States and the Kingdom of Korea, this thesis: (1) Reveals, for the first time, the original 1871 diary of U.S. Minister to China, Frederick Ferdinand Low, and the wealth of new historical data therein: his misgivings and motivations; his plans and failings; and his appreciation for the historical importance of the mission which today bears his name; (2) Provides deeper analysis of the contemporary events bearing on the Low-Rodgers Expedition and gives a deeper appreciation of the obstacles which worked against its success from the very moment of its inception; (3) Shows why misconceptions about the expedition and some peripheral events have remained unchallenged for over a century; and (4) Explains why Low's efforts to open Korea before the 1882 Shufeldt mission failed, yet still played a more important role in the development of U.S. policy in Korea and the opening of Korea to the Western world than has been recognized.
RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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