Partial Resilience in Nationalist China’s Wartime Capital

Surviving in Chongqing
  • Nicole Elizabeth Barnes
Part of the Palgrave Studies in World Environmental History book series (PSWEH)


In November 1937, the Imperial Japanese Army reached the Chinese capital city Nanjing, sending the Nationalist government fleeing up the Yangzi River, first to Wuhan, then to Chongqing. Directing the nation from a temporary capital after having lost the majority of its tax base, the Nationalist state created the conditions for its population’s mere survival, but failed to produce the possibility of full thriving. This partial resilience resulted from policies that privileged the wealthy and punished the poor, who remained vulnerable to disease, hunger, floods, fires, and police brutality.

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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nicole Elizabeth Barnes
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of HistoryDuke UniversityDurhamUSA

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