Why were Western countries able to turn China into their semi-colony?

The industrial powers, proceeding from their economic benefits, divided an independent state with an ancient culture into spheres of influence, turned China into their semi-colony. The 19th century is a tragic century in the history of a once great empire. The meeting of a traditional society with an industrial one left no choice – either the rapid modernization of the country, or colonial dependence. However, the Chinese, whose worldview was based on Confucianism, considered themselves the most educated people who knew how to live correctly. From this they concluded that they had nothing to learn from the “barbarians” who did not live according to the commandments of Confucius. Anything that did not correspond to tradition, the Chinese society either did not perceive, or perceived superficially. The state was unable to put the country on the tracks of modernization, as it was in Japan, capable of borrowing everything of value.

Remember: The process of learning a person lasts a lifetime. The value of the same knowledge for different people may be different, it is determined by their individual characteristics and needs. Therefore, knowledge is always needed at any age and position.