In China’s case, there was much rebellion due to the invasion of imperial troops. Many people turned against the government and became bandits. In a confession by the Taiping Rebels, they stated that they began to rebel against these troops because they “lacked the funds” to engage in business. (1) Another reason for the Taiping rebellion was due to the imperial troops making serious demands where they would use accusations saying that Chinese people were connected with bandits when they really weren’t. Some made these accusations due to personal grudges that were held against the accused, others made them to receive rewards. The Taiping rebels exclaimed “We could not survive except by pillage, nor could we save our lives if we did not fight against the imperial troops that were sent…to exterminate us.” (2)
One of the most prominent rebels, who was a follower of western ideas, was Sun Yat-sen. He was known as the “Father of modern China” and hoped to strengthen and revive the Chinese government by replacing it with the European ideas of responsible government and equality. Sun Yat-sen wrote: “China is the China of the Chinese. The government of China should be in the hands of the Chinese”. (3)
Vietnam’s central theme of their culture was nationalism during this time. After the French invaded the country the Emperor called for all of the country to unite and help stop the French from taking over the country. No matter what the Vietnamese tried to do, the French would not negotiate and eventually took over the capital (4).
Japan, being a superior power in military technology, brought many different countries, such as Britain, Russia and America to adventure to her lands. (5) Japan allowed the Americans to enter, but not everyone agreed with their actions. Tokugawa Nariaki wrote, “If we put our trust in peace…the morale of the country will be greatly lowered and we will come in the end to complete collapse.” (6) He also felt that the Americans wanted to bring Christianity into the country. At that time, Japan was not a Christian state, and they wanted to keep that religion out. Nariaki’s main goal was to not cause a rebellion against the country, and in turn, lose control of their land.
The Turks also tried their hand at coming up with their own Constitution. In the Proclamation of the Young Turks, a group that tried to organize an opposition to the sultan, the Young Turks were forced to exile for their attempts to restore the constitution of 1867. The new constitution called for many things such as “The Senate will be named. . . as follows: one third by the Sultan and two thirds by the nation, and the term of senators will be of limited duration.” (7)
Without rebellion, many countries would not be where they are today. It helped countries unite in some ways, and in others, fall to others. It played a very important role in imperialism in the late 19th century and into the early 20th century.