During the 20th century China underwent a massive transformation. In the early 1900s China was a mass of land lacking any real political cohesion and so was plagued by disputes between the many ruling warlords. However, by the year 2000 China was considered a major contender on the world stage and still is today; it almost seems certain that China will become the most powerful nation on earth in the next 50 years. This major transformation is seen to be a great success of China, considering the relatively short amount of time in which it was accomplished, but the question still remains as to whether entire credit should be given to China itself or instead whether China’s successful development was more due to the forced interference of foreign powers or, to a lesser extent, their influence rather than the inspired originality of Chinese politicians. The main stimulus for development certainly seems to be economic policy (either the respective leaders of China in their adaptation of foreign policy, sometimes brought about through influence, or the forced implementation of policy by foreign powers) with the consequent effect of this being development of the social and political workings of China.
The idea of “reform on the Western model” of economics and politics came as early as China’s defeat in the first Sino-Japanese war, with some in Chinese society clearly recognising the need to advance China’s prospects as a world power, with a more organised government, to prevent the exploitation of their vast natural resources and population by foreign powers, and seeing the Western approach as the most efficient way to fulfil their potential. However, neither influence from Western nations nor interference in the form of their tactic of divide and exploit could be said to have a great deal of positive effect on development. In fact, any notion of adapting and improving the