Explain the different stages of development of printing technology in China



China was one of the countries where the earliest kind of print technology was developed.
The different stages ofdevelopment of printing technology in China are
{i) From AD 594 onwards, books in China were printed by rubbing paper against the inked surface of woodblocks. These papers were also invented in China.
(ii) The imperial state of China was the major producer of printed material for a very longtime. At that time, China possessed a huge bureaucratic system which recruited its personnel through civil service examination. Textbooks for this examination were printed in large number. From the 16th century, the number of candidates for the examination increased, so the number of books also increased.
(iii) By the 17th century, urban culture developed in China and merchants, rich women, wives of scholar-officials not only started reading different books like, fictions, poetry, autobiographies, anthologies of literary masterpieces, romantic plays, they also began to write.
(iv) In the late 19th century, Shanghai became the hub of the new print culture by importing Western printing techniques and mechanical presses. From hand printing, there was a gradual shift to mechanical printing in China.