Courtesy Reuters

The Future of the White Man in the Far East

WHENEVER the future of the white man in the Orient comes to be discussed it inevitably means one question. Will the power and prestige of the white man in the Far East be what it has been in the past? It is acknowledged that for the moment these are at a low ebb. But can they rise again in the future to anything like their past glory?

I never hear that phrase, the power and the prestige of the white man in the Far East, without being reminded of a certain incident in my Chinese childhood which more nearly wrecked our peaceful missionary household than all the riots and revolutions of China put together. There came to our compound gate one winter's day a unique person. He was an American salesman. Any white man was strange at our gate, but a salesman we had never seen. My father admitted him at once because what he sold, it seemed, was Bibles, though anything more coals to Newcastle than Bibles to our house cannot be imagined. My father in the goodness of his heart never inquired how the man came to be selling Bibles, and the salesman himself never told us, so none of us ever knew. He was simply there, very dirty and hungry and with no baggage except some shopworn Bibles and a small cardboard suitcase that after several weeks of his steadfastly remaining a hungry guest in the house apparently provided him with no change of garments. The weeks grew into months and he stayed on, and my mother reached the point of mutiny. He had a change of clothes now, but they were my father's. When he finally left us, and it was entirely due to my redoubtable mother that he did so at all, he went out clothed in my father's second-best suit, with other garments of my father's in my father's suitcase, all his Bibles sold to my father, and his purse full of my father's meager

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