This is the last of five films in the series Indiana Jones in History: From Pompeii to the Moon. Based on a book of the same name by Justin M. Jacobs, the films look at treasure seekers throughout the ages and acting in various cultures.
The sections which interest us and being shown here are those on China (XXII to XVI). The format seems to be basically a reading from the book illustrated with appropriate photographs of the objects and people discussed.
The last of these films to focus of China looks at how the changing mood, mainly amongst intellectuals in China, eventually led to the end of the pillaging and removal of Chinese culutural relics to western museums and collections.
It is surprising in many ways that this was not a priority of the various Chinese Governments, but it was not. It was mainly western and Japanese educated intellectuals who led the movement, first to ensure that Chinese scholars would accompany explorers on their expeditions, and finally to expel the foreigners from China.
Sven Hedin agreed to the former terms, and was accompanied by the new generation of Chinese scholars; Chapman Andrews, the Harvard scholar, was basically stopped in his tracks, and withdrew; and Aurel Stein was amongst the last to attempt a new expediation, but had his passport withdrawn at the insistence of the new China officials.
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