As a private venture, the Shenbao was free of the ideologies that constrained missionary papers published in China during the nineteenth century. But it also lacked the subsidies that allowed these papers to survive without a large readership. As a purely commercial venture, the foreign-managed Shenbao depended on the acceptance of educated Chinese, who would write for it, read it and buy it. This book sets out to analyze how the managers of the Shenbao made their alien product acceptable to Chinese readers and how foreign-style newspapers became alternative modes of communication ackwledged as a powerful part of the Chinese public sphere within a few years. In short, it describes how the foreign Shenbao became a newspaper for China .