New Book «Russia, Great Britain and Tibet in the «Great Game»

Published new book of Russian famous Indologist Tatiana Shaumyan “Russia, Great Britain and Tibet in the «Great Game». - Moscow: KMK Scientific Press, 2017.

Dr. Tatiana Shaumyan, Head of Center for Indian Studies Institute
of Oriental Studies Russian Academy of Sciences, Member of Advisory board of RIC

The book deals with the little-known history of international relations in Central Asia and the Far East in the late 19th - early 20th Century. It makes use of many original sources from the Foreign Policy Archives of the Russian Empire and the National Archives of India, including cor­respondence between the Russian Czar and the 13th Dalai-Lama, reports and letters from Russian diplomatic representatives and agents from London, Calcutta, Bejing and Urga.

The author shows the meaning of Tibet in the Russian foreign policy, describes features of Tibet’s relationship with Russia, the Qing Empire, Great Britain and Mongolia, and details of attempts to consolidate Tibet’s independence. The establishment of Russian-Tibetan relations, the Tibetan missions to Russia in 1900 and 1901 were connected with key trends of Russian Far Eastern and Central Asian policies as a part of the “Great Game”, an Anglo-Russian rivalry in Asia. Tibetan missions to Russia gave Lord Curzon a pretext to send a British military expedition to Tibet in 1903-1904.

The author argues that it was the Tibetan question that became the ballon d’essai in Anglo-Russian negotiations and created an opportunity for both sides to recognize other’s intentions. The Anglo-Russian Convention of 1907 created an opportunity for the Qing Empire to strengthen its position in Tibet.


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