Knowledge‧Power: The Imperial Examination System of the Qing Dynasty
9/11/2011 – 6/2/2012
Special Exhibition Gallery,
Hong Kong Museum of History
Jointly presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department and Shanghai Jiading Museum
The imperial examination was a pioneering system developed in China that combined education with recruitment for the state bureaucracy. Upholding the principle of fairness through open participation, public examination, equal competition and selection on merit, it provided the masses with access to social mobility. Showcasing over 100 sets of artefacts selected from the collections of the Shanghai Jiading Museum and the Hong Kong Museum of History, the exhibition took us back to the Qing dynasty to revisit the imperial examination, its history and its significance. Also featured were a host of artefacts provided by local sources and a series of interactive displays that presented the subject in a dynamic and playful manner. By tracing the development, the demise and the legacy of the system, the exhibition provided us with a better understanding of the instrumental role that the imperial examination played in shaping Chinese society and culture over a period of 1,300 years.