China, the birthplace of the Han culture has always been the center of oriental culture, of which the Qing Dynasty, China's last feudal dynasty, is particularly representative. Its administrative policies transcended national boundaries and many east Asian countries were vassal states of this dynasty which witnessed dramatic social changes. The decline of the feudal civilization in favour of modern western civilization is a subject of study in current world-wide history research. The clash between Western and Eastern culture in 17th century China shaped world history. The archives relating to the activities of Western priests in 17th century China, contained in the confidential records of the Qing's Grand Secretariat, provide a detailed first-hand account of the "Infiltration of Western Culture in China". Read more about this element on the UNESCO Memory of the World website.