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Ancient and Classical China

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Lacey Wesley

on 13 June 2013

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Transcript of Ancient and Classical China

Ancient and Classical China
Location 1
Final Destination
Location 2
Location 3
THE ZHOU MAP

THE MANDATE OF HEAVEN
AND THE DYNASTY CYCLE

The doctrine of wuwei
Disengagement from worldly affairs
Called for simple, unpretentious life
Live in harmony with nature
Advocated small state, self-sufficient community
Political implications
Served as a counterbalance to Confucian activism
Individuals often both Confucians and Daoists
Flourishes when society at peace, prosperous

DAOIST WUWEI

Prominent critics of Confucianism
Preferred philosophical reflection and introspection
Understand natural principles, live in harmony with them
Laozi and Zhuangzi
Laozi, founder of Daoism; wrote the Daodejing
Zhuangzi, Daoist philosopher, wrote Zhuangzi
Philosophical Daoism
Dao - The way of nature, the way of the cosmos
Opposites in balance, complementary
An eternal principle governing all workings of the world
Passive, yielding, does nothing , accomplishes everything
Tailor behavior to passive, yielding nature
Ambition, activism brought the world to chaos
Popular Daoism
A folk or religious form of Daoism; not philosophical
Emerged at end of Han Dynasty
Seek to master forces of natural, spiritual world
Many deities including immortals, which people venerated
Symbolized prosperity, happiness
Many saints were patrons of certain occupations
Gods associated with natural cycles, agriculture
Daoist priests were shamans, performed exorcisms

DAOISM

The state's strength
Agriculture
Military force
Discouraged commerce, education, and the arts
How to treat people
Harnessing self-interest of people for needs of state
Called “carrot and stick” approach in west
Called for harsh penalties even for minor infractions
Advocated collective responsibility before law
Not popular among the Chinese,
Chinese used legalism if state threatened
Legalism still doctrine common to China

Legalism
The doctrine of statecraft
Promoted a practical and ruthlessly efficient approach
No concern with ethics and morality
No concern with the principles governing nature
Doctrine used by Qin dynasty
Shang Yang (ca. 390-338 B.C.E.)
A chief minister of the Qin state
His policies summarized in The Book of Lord Shang
Was executed by his political enemies
Han Feizi (ca. 280-233 B.C.E.)
Student of Xunzi, became the most articulate Legalist
A synthesizer of Legalist ideas
Forced to suicide by his political enemies

Mencius (372-289 B.C.E.)
Principal spokesman for the Confucian school
Believed in the goodness of human nature
Government by benevolence, humanity
Xunzi (298-238 B.C.E.)
Served as a governmental administrator
Cast doubt on the goodness of human nature
Harsh social discipline to order to society
Stress moral education, good public behavior

LATER CONFUCIANS

Zhou literature
The Book of Change, a manual of diviners
The Book of History, the history of the Zhou
The Book of Rites
The rules of etiquette and rituals
for aristocrats
The Book of Songs
The most notable of the classic works
Verses on themes both light and serious
Reflected social conditions of the early Zhou
Destruction of early literature
Most Zhou writings have perished
1st emperor destroyed most writings

THOUGHT, LITERATURE

No organized religion, priestly class
Impersonal heavenly power - tian
Males performed few duties
Fathers took care of family duties
Rulers took care of the public duties
Oracle bones
Rulers, people question tian for direction
Primary instruments of fortune-tellers
Discovery of the "dragon bones" in 1890s
Bones recorded day-to-day concerns
Early Chinese writing
Earliest form was the pictograph
From pictograph to ideograph
Absence of alphabetic or phonetic component
More than two thousand characters
Modern Chinese writing is direct descendant

SECULAR CULTURAL TRADITION

Customary beliefs and practice
As old as civilization in China
Never encouraged/discouraged by state
Syncretic in nature
Will absorb many different traditions
Blends all major ideas, philosophies
Exists in harmony with official philosophies, faiths
Believes gods, spirits (shen) influence family, world
Power over world affairs
Deceased members of community, family
Deified figures of history, literature
Spiritual embodiment of nature, geography
Maintenance of family shrines, community temples
Prayers, supplications
Food offerings
Shamanism and divination are practiced

CHINESE POPULAR RELIGION

Confucian Scholar Official

CONFUCIAN
SOCIAL HIERARCHY

Central to Chinese culture: kinship
Veneration of ancestors
Belief in ancestors' presence, continuing influence
Burial of material goods with the dead
Offering sacrifices at the graves
Eldest males presided over rites honoring ancestors
Only males could perform religious duties
Filial Piety
Young must respect elders without question
Elders always right, make decisions
Patriarchal society
During Neolithic times, Chinese society = matrilineal
Rise of states, war due to men's contribution s
After Shang, not even queens merited temples

FAMILY

The rise of the Zhou
The last Shang king was a bad ruler
The Zhou forces toppled the Shang
Political organization
Adopted decentralized administration
Used princes and relatives to rule regions
Consequences
Weak central government with ceremonial functions
Rise of regional powers; often called feudalism
Constant rivalry between warring families, nobles

THE ZHOU DYNASTY:
1122-256 B.C.E.

SHANG CHINA

ANCIENT CHINA

Agricultural villages
Appeared in the valleys of the two rivers
Society was patriarchal
Fathers dominated families
Elder males ruled village
Males performed religious sacrifices
Political Institutions
Towns and small states
Appeared in north China during 2nd millennium B.C.E.
Three dynastic states in the valley of Yellow River:
1. Xia
2. Shang
3. Zhou
EMERGENCE OF CHINESE SOCIETY
2ND MILLENNIUM BCE

The Qin State and Dynasty
Partially sinified pastoralists, perhaps even Turkish
Located in west China and adopted Legalist policies
Encouraged agriculture, resulted in strong economy
Organized a powerful army equipped with iron weapons
Conquered other states and unified China in 221 B.C.E.
Qin Shi Huang di
King of Qin proclaimed himself First Emperor, 221 B.C.E.
Established centralized imperial rule
Held sons of nobles as hostages
Demolished nobles castles
Project of connecting and extending the Great Wall
700,000 people worked on project; 100,000 killed

UNIFICATION OF CHINA

Founder Mo Zi
Lived 470 – 391 BC
A commoner, worked with mean people
Served in military, ideas based on it
Beliefs
Partiality, competition causes problems
Advocates doctrine of universal love
Advocates cooperation
Stress discipline, order, authority
Loyalty to all elders, not family
Emphasized practical; hate waste, war
Favor math, science over arts, ritual

Confucius (551-479 B.C.E.)
A strong-willed man, from an aristocratic family
Traveled ten years searching for an official post
Educator with numerous disciples
Sayings compiled in the Analects by disciples
Confucian ideas
Fundamentally moral and ethical in character
Restore political and social order; stress ritual
Formation of junzi - "superior individuals"
Edited Zhou classics for his disciples to study
The key Confucian concepts
Ren - a sense of humanity
Li - a sense of propriety
Xiao - filial piety
Cultivating of junzi for bringing order to China
5 Relationships and filial piety as basis of society

CONFUCIUS’ SEARCH FOR ORDER

Steppelands
Pastoralists domesticated animals
Lived on grassy lands
Seasonal migrations to pasture lands
Became nomads, ancestors of Turks, Mongols
Nomadic society
Little farming, but relied on herding animals
Two classes – a royal clan and then all commoners
Patriarchal society but women had influence
Interactions
Constant warfare between nomads over best grazing area
Relied on grains and manufactured goods of the Chinese
Exchange of products between nomads, farmers
Nomads often invaded rich agricultural society
Nomads did not imitate Chinese ways

PASTORALISTS

Household Rituals
Always performed by males
Expression of Confucian filial piety
Domestic altar
Names of deceased, icons
Worship of the stove god
Oversees family’s moral conduct
Reports on family to heaven
Public Rituals
Preserve social harmony, local identity
Local earth god protects area from spirits
City god important; has temple at center of city
Physical, public processions, offerings
Supreme Deity and Influence of Daoism
Shangdi (Ruler on High)
Cannot be addressed directly
Shang kings called up other spirits to address Shangdi
Later called Tian or Heaven
Rulers called Son of Heaven
Empire is his favorite government
Mandate of Heaven is an off-shoot of this idea

HOUSEHOLD & PUBLIC RITUALS

Iron metallurgy
Iron technology spread; 1st millennium B.C.E.
Iron weapons were cheaper to produce than bronze
Helped regional aristocrats to resist the central power
Feudal state of Qin mastered iron technology, weapons
Nomadic invasion sacked capital
Prior period called Western Zhou
Capital moved to Loyang beginning Eastern Zhou
Warring States Period (403-221 B.C.E.)
Territorial princes became more independent
States warred one with another
Rise of Sun Tzu as military strategist
Rise of Qin state
Qin began conquering rivals
Created vast army, no one able to stop Qin kings
Last Zhou king abdicated his position in 256 B.C.E.

THE FALL OF THE ZHOU

The right to rule granted by heaven
Zhou justified their overthrow of Shang
Ruler called "the son of heaven"
Only given to virtuous, strong rulers
To lose mandate = someone else should rule
Replacement of dynasties = Dynastic Cycle
Signs one had lost mandate
Corruption, heavy taxes
Lazy officials and rulers
Revolts, invasions, civil wars, crime
Natural disasters
Society develops bad morals, habits

MANDATE OF HEAVEN

XIA CHINA

Archaeological Evidence
Discovery of Xia is still in preliminary stage
Archaeologists have found some tombs
Chinese scholars believe it existed
Supposed History
Established about 2200 B.C.E.
Legendary King Yu
The dynasty founder
A hero of flood control
Erlitou: possibly the capital city of the Xia

XIA DYNASTY

The Yellow River
Water source at high plateau of Tibet
Loess soil carried by the river's water, hence "yellow"
River was "China's Sorrow" as it flooded uncontrollably
Loess: rich soil, soft, easy to work
Neolithic societies after 5000 B.C.E.
Yangshao society, 5000-3000 B.C.E.
Excavations at Banpo village: fine pottery, bone tools
Longshan culture: 3000 – 2000 BCE

EARLY AGRARIAN SOCIETY

Beginnings -
Over two hundred thousand years ago
Domesticated rice
Around 7000 B.C.E.
In the valley of the Yangzi River
Millet cultivation
In the valley of the Yellow River
Also around 8000 BCE
Wheat and barley
Became staple foods of north China by 2000 B.C.E.
Two Hearths?
Genetic and archaeological evidence says yes
Northern hearth (Yellow R) ethnically Chinese
Southern hearth (Yangzi R) ethnically Polynesian

APPEARANCE OF
HUMANS IN EAST ASIA

The Sage Kings
Gave the Chinese “civilization”
King Yao
A virtuous ruler bringing harmony to society
King Shun
Regulating the four seasons,
Invented weights, measures, and units of time
King Yu
Rescued China from raging floods of the Yellow River

Legendary?
Legends reflect values of society
Many may prove true!

The Xia Dynasty
Considered historical by Chinese
Possibility that the Sage Kings were from the Xia Dynasty

The Yangzi valley
The longest river of China
Two crops of rice per year
Dependable and beneficial to farmers
Indigenous peoples of South China
Ancestors of the Malayo-Polynesians
Many assimilated into Chinese society
Some pushed into hills, mountains
Many migrated to Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand
State of Chu (Conquered by Qin)
Emerged in the central Yangzi region
Challenged the Zhou for supremacy
Adopted Chinese ways

EXPANSION OF CHINA

Arose in the North China
Along Yellow River
Between Ordos Bulge and Mouth of Yellow River
Evidence
Many records, material remains discovered
Bronze metallurgy, monopolized by elite
Vast network of walled towns
Agricultural surpluses supported large troops
Shang Society
Shang-kings were warriors
Constant struggle with nobles for power
The Shang capital moved six times
Small Shang elite ruled large common population
Lavish tombs of Shang kings
Contained chariots, weapons, bronze goods
Sacrificial human victims, dogs, horses

THE SHANG DYNASTY:
1766-1122 B.C.E.

Merchants

Artisans

Slaves

Specialized labor
Free artisans
Artists, musicians
Craftsmen in great demand
Served the needs of ruling elites
Merchants, trade were important
Jade from Central Asia, tin from SE Asia
A few pieces of pottery from India
Merchants ranked socially lower
Slaves
Mostly war prisoners
Performed hard work
Became sacrificial victims
Suspicious towards Foreigners

OTHERS

Imperial Family

Nobles

Peasants

The ruling elites
Royal family and allied noble families at the top
Their lavish consumption of bronze products, silk
Hereditary aristocrats with extensive landholding
Most of the land owned by the king, nobles
Peasants, the majority of population
Called the “mean” people
Landless peasants provided labor
Lived in small subterranean houses
Wood, bone, stone tools common
Iron spread in 6th century B.C.E.
Women’s World
Wine making, weaving, silkworm raising
Managing household, raising children
Elite women vs. poor women

THE SOCIAL ORDER

THE ZHOU MAP

THE MANDATE OF HEAVEN AND THE DYNASTY CYCLE

Expeditions consumed the empire's surplus
Raised taxes and confiscated land of some
wealthy individuals
Taxes, land confiscations discouraged investment
Much of defense consumed on defending against nomads
Social tensions, stratification between the poor and rich
Problems of land distribution
Early Han supported land redistribution
Economic difficulties forced some small landowners to sell property
Some sold themselves or their families into slavery
Lands accumulated in the hands of a few
No land reform, because Han needed cooperation of large landowners
The reign of Wang Mang
A powerful Han minister dethroned the baby
emperor
Claimed imperial title himself,
9 C.E. Land reforms - the "socialist emperor“
Overthrown by revolts 23 C.E

HAN TROUBLES

The Qin State and Dynasty
Partially sinified pastoralists, perhaps even Turkish
Located in west China and adopted Legalist policies
Encouraged agriculture, resulted in strong economy
Organized a powerful army equipped with iron weapons
Conquered other states and unified China in 221 B.C.E.
Qin Shi Huang di
King of Qin proclaimed himself First Emperor, 221 B.C.E.
Established centralized imperial rule
Held sons of nobles as hostages
Demolished nobles castles
Project of connecting and extending the Great Wall
700,000 people worked on project; 100,000 killed

UNIFICATION OF CHINA

The doctrine of wuwei
Disengagement from worldly affairs
Called for simple, unpretentious life
Live in harmony with nature
Advocated small state, self-sufficient community
Political implications
Served as a counterbalance to Confucian activism
Individuals often both Confucians and Daoists
Flourishes when society at peace, prosperous

DAOIST WUWEI

Prominent critics of Confucianism
Preferred philosophical reflection and introspection
Understand natural principles, live in harmony with them
Laozi and Zhuangzi
Laozi, founder of Daoism; wrote the Daodejing
Zhuangzi, Daoist philosopher, wrote Zhuangzi
Philosophical Daoism
Dao - The way of nature, the way of the cosmos
Opposites in balance, complementary
An eternal principle governing all workings of the world
Passive, yielding, does nothing , accomplishes everything
Tailor behavior to passive, yielding nature
Ambition, activism brought the world to chaos
Popular Daoism
A folk or religious form of Daoism; not philosophical
Emerged at end of Han Dynasty
Seek to master forces of natural, spiritual world
Many deities including immortals, which people venerated
Symbolized prosperity, happiness
Many saints were patrons of certain occupations
Gods associated with natural cycles, agriculture
Daoist priests were shamans, performed exorcisms

DAOISM

Founder Mo Zi
Lived 470 – 391 BC
A commoner, worked with mean people
Served in military, ideas based on it
Beliefs
Partiality, competition causes problems
Advocates doctrine of universal love
Advocates cooperation
Stress discipline, order, authority
Loyalty to all elders, not family
Emphasized practical; hate waste, war
Favor math, science over arts, ritual

The state's strength
Agriculture
Military force
Discouraged commerce, education, and the arts
How to treat people
Harnessing self-interest of people for needs of state
Called “carrot and stick” approach in west
Called for harsh penalties even for minor infractions
Advocated collective responsibility before law
Not popular among the Chinese,
Chinese used legalism if state threatened
Legalism still doctrine common to China

Legalism
The doctrine of statecraft
Promoted a practical and ruthlessly efficient approach
No concern with ethics and morality
No concern with the principles governing nature
Doctrine used by Qin dynasty
Shang Yang (ca. 390-338 B.C.E.)
A chief minister of the Qin state
His policies summarized in The Book of Lord Shang
Was executed by his political enemies
Han Feizi (ca. 280-233 B.C.E.)
Student of Xunzi, became the most articulate Legalist
A synthesizer of Legalist ideas
Forced to suicide by his political enemies

No organized religion, priestly class
Impersonal heavenly power - tian
Males performed few duties
Fathers took care of family duties
Rulers took care of the public duties
Oracle bones
Rulers, people question tian for direction
Primary instruments of fortune-tellers
Discovery of the "dragon bones" in 1890s
Bones recorded day-to-day concerns
Early Chinese writing
Earliest form was the pictograph
From pictograph to ideograph
Absence of alphabetic or phonetic component
More than two thousand characters
Modern Chinese writing is direct descendant

SECULAR CULTURAL TRADITION

Customary beliefs and practice
As old as civilization in China
Never encouraged/discouraged by state
Syncretic in nature
Will absorb many different traditions
Blends all major ideas, philosophies
Exists in harmony with official philosophies, faiths
Believes gods, spirits (shen) influence family, world
Power over world affairs
Deceased members of community, family
Deified figures of history, literature
Spiritual embodiment of nature, geography
Maintenance of family shrines, community temples
Prayers, supplications
Food offerings
Shamanism and divination are practiced

CHINESE POPULAR RELIGION

SHANG CHINA

ANCIENT CHINA

The Later Han Dynasty (25-220 C.E.)
Overthrown of Wang Mang restores Han
New Han much weakened
Rule often through large families, gentry
Rise of Eunuchs in government as new source of power
The Yellow Turban Uprising (Daoist Revolt)
Rulers restored order but did not address problem of landholding
Yellow Turban uprising inflicted serious damage on the Han
Collapse of the Han
Court factions paralyzed central government
Han empire dissolved
China was divided into regional kingdoms
Period of 3 Kingdoms
Local aristocrats divided empire
Later fragmented further
During period nomads invaded, Buddhism entered

LOSS OF THE MANDATE

Iron metallurgy
Farming tools, utensils
Weapons
Silk textiles
Sericulture spread all over China during the Han
High quality Chinese silk became a prized commodity
Traded as far as India, Persia, Mesopotamia, and Rome
State monopolies on liquor, salt and iron
Paper production
Invented probably before 100 C.E.
Began to replace silk and bamboo as writing materials
Population growth
Increased from 20 to 60 million (220 BCE to 9 CE)
Despite light taxation, state revenue was large
Silk Road established: horses for silk

COMMERCE, INDUSTRY

Patriarchal, patrilocal households averaged five inhabitants
Large, multigenerational compound families also developed
Women's subordination (Ban Zhao Admonitions for Women)
Cultivators were the majority of the population
Differences apparent between noble, lower class women
Scholar bureaucrats: Confucian trained bureaucrats
Officials selected through competitive testing
Used to run the government in Early Han
Scholar Gentry
Confucian bureaucrats intermarried with landed elite
New class comes to dominate local, national offices
Strongest in late Han
Merchants held in low social esteem

HAN SOCIAL STRUCTURE

MAPPING HAN CHINA

Liu Bang
A general, persistent man, a methodical planner
Restored order, established dynasty, 206 B.C.E.
Han was long-lived dynasty
Early Han policies
Sought middle way between Zhou and Qin
Royal relatives were not reliable
Returned to centralized rule
Martial Emperor (141-87 B.C.E.)
Han Wudi ruled for 54 years
Pursued centralization and expansion

THE EARLY HAN DYNASTY

Suppressing the resistance
Bitterly opposed, was opposed by Confucian scholars
Buried 460 scholars alive because of their criticism against
the Qin
Burned all books except some with utilitarian value
Policies of centralization
Standardization of laws, currencies, weights, measures
Standardized scripts: tried to create uniform language
Creates a uniform writing system but not language
Tomb of the First Emperor
The tomb was an underground palace
Excavation of the tomb since 1974
Terracotta soldiers and army to protect tomb
The collapse of the Qin dynasty
Massive public works generated ill will among people
Waves of rebels overwhelmed the Qin court in 207 B.C.E.
A short-lived dynasty, left deep marks in Chinese history

Mencius (372-289 B.C.E.)
Principal spokesman for the Confucian school
Believed in the goodness of human nature
Government by benevolence, humanity
Xunzi (298-238 B.C.E.)
Served as a governmental administrator
Cast doubt on the goodness of human nature
Harsh social discipline to order to society
Stress moral education, good public behavior

LATER CONFUCIANS

Confucius (551-479 B.C.E.)
A strong-willed man, from an aristocratic family
Traveled ten years searching for an official post
Educator with numerous disciples
Sayings compiled in the Analects by disciples
Confucian ideas
Fundamentally moral and ethical in character
Restore political and social order; stress ritual
Formation of junzi - "superior individuals"
Edited Zhou classics for his disciples to study
The key Confucian concepts
Ren - a sense of humanity
Li - a sense of propriety
Xiao - filial piety
Cultivating of junzi for bringing order to China
5 Relationships and filial piety as basis of society

CONFUCIUS’ SEARCH FOR ORDER

Steppelands
Pastoralists domesticated animals
Lived on grassy lands
Seasonal migrations to pasture lands
Became nomads, ancestors of Turks, Mongols
Nomadic society
Little farming, but relied on herding animals
Two classes – a royal clan and then all commoners
Patriarchal society but women had influence
Interactions
Constant warfare between nomads over best grazing area
Relied on grains and manufactured goods of the Chinese
Exchange of products between nomads, farmers
Nomads often invaded rich agricultural society
Nomads did not imitate Chinese ways

PASTORALISTS

Zhou literature
The Book of Change, a manual of diviners
The Book of History, the history of the Zhou
The Book of Rites
The rules of etiquette and rituals for aristocrats
The Book of Songs
The most notable of the classic works
Verses on themes both light and serious
Reflected social conditions of the early Zhou
Destruction of early literature
Most Zhou writings have perished
1st emperor destroyed most writings

THOUGHT, LITERATURE

Confucian Scholar Official

CONFUCIAN SOCIAL HIERARCHY

The rise of the Zhou
The last Shang king was a bad ruler
The Zhou forces toppled the Shang
Political organization
Adopted decentralized administration
Used princes and relatives to rule regions
Consequences
Weak central government with ceremonial functions
Rise of regional powers; often called feudalism
Constant rivalry between warring families, nobles

THE ZHOU DYNASTY: 1122-256 B.C.E.

The right to rule granted by heaven
Zhou justified their overthrow of Shang
Ruler called "the son of heaven"
Only given to virtuous, strong rulers
To lose mandate = someone else should rule
Replacement of dynasties = Dynastic Cycle
Signs one had lost mandate
Corruption, heavy taxes
Lazy officials and rulers
Revolts, invasions, civil wars, crime
Natural disasters
Society develops bad morals, habits

MANDATE OF HEAVEN

XIA CHINA

The Yellow River
Water source at high plateau of Tibet
Loess soil carried by the river's water, hence "yellow"
River was "China's Sorrow" as it flooded uncontrollably
Loess: rich soil, soft, easy to work
Neolithic societies after 5000 B.C.E.
Yangshao society, 5000-3000 B.C.E.
Excavations at Banpo village: fine pottery, bone tools
Longshan culture: 3000 – 2000 BCE

EARLY AGRARIAN SOCIETY

Agricultural villages
Appeared in the valleys of the two rivers
Society was patriarchal
Fathers dominated families
Elder males ruled village
Males performed religious sacrifices
Political Institutions
Towns and small states
Appeared in north China during 2nd millennium B.C.E.
Three dynastic states in the valley of Yellow River:
Xia
Shang
Zhou

EMERGENCE OF CHINESE SOCIETY 2ND MILLENNIUM BCE

Beginnings
Over two hundred thousand years ago
Domesticated rice
Around 7000 B.C.E.
In the valley of the Yangzi River
Millet cultivation
In the valley of the Yellow River
Also around 8000 BCE
Wheat and barley
Became staple foods of north China by 2000 B.C.E.
Two Hearths?
Genetic and archaeological evidence says yes
Northern hearth (Yellow R) ethnically Chinese
Southern hearth (Yangzi R) ethnically Polynesian

APPEARANCE OF HUMANS IN EAST ASIA

Han centralization
Adopted Legalist policies
Built an enormous bureaucracy to rule the empire
Continued to build roads and canals
Levied taxes on agriculture, trade, and craft industries
Imperial monopolies on production of iron and salt
Established Confucian educational system for training bureaucrats
Confucianism as the basis of the curriculum in imperial university
Thirty thousand students enrolled in the university in Later Han
Han imperial expansion
Invaded and colonized northern Vietnam and Korea
Extended China into central Asia
Han organized vast armies to invade Xiongnu territory
Han enjoyed uncontested hegemony in east and central Asia

HAN STATECRAFT

The Yangzi valley
The longest river of China
Two crops of rice per year
Dependable and beneficial to farmers
Indigenous peoples of South China
Ancestors of the Malayo-Polynesians
Many assimilated into Chinese society
Some pushed into hills, mountains
Many migrated to Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand
State of Chu (Conquered by Qin)
Emerged in the central Yangzi region
Challenged the Zhou for supremacy
Adopted Chinese ways

EXPANSION OF CHINA

Household Rituals
Always performed by males
Expression of Confucian filial piety
Domestic altar
Names of deceased, icons
Worship of the stove god
Oversees family’s moral conduct
Reports on family to heaven
Public Rituals
Preserve social harmony, local identity
Local earth god protects area from spirits
City god important; has temple at center of city
Physical, public processions, offerings
Supreme Deity and Influence of Daoism
Shangdi (Ruler on High)
Cannot be addressed directly
Shang kings called up other spirits to address Shangdi
Later called Tian or Heaven
Rulers called Son of Heaven
Empire is his favorite government
Mandate of Heaven is an off-shoot of this idea

HOUSEHOLD & PUBLIC RITUALS

Central to Chinese culture: kinship
Veneration of ancestors
Belief in ancestors' presence, continuing influence
Burial of material goods with the dead
Offering sacrifices at the graves
Eldest males presided over rites honoring ancestors
Only males could perform religious duties
Filial Piety
Young must respect elders without question
Elders always right, make decisions
Patriarchal society
During Neolithic times, Chinese society = matrilineal
Rise of states, war due to men's contribution s
After Shang, not even queens merited temples

FAMILY

Iron metallurgy
Iron technology spread; 1st millennium B.C.E.
Iron weapons were cheaper to produce than bronze
Helped regional aristocrats to resist the central power
Feudal state of Qin mastered iron technology, weapons
Nomadic invasion sacked capital
Prior period called Western Zhou
Capital moved to Loyang beginning Eastern Zhou
Warring States Period (403-221 B.C.E.)
Territorial princes became more independent
States warred one with another
Rise of Sun Tzu as military strategist
Rise of Qin state
Qin began conquering rivals
Created vast army, no one able to stop Qin kings
Last Zhou king abdicated his position in 256 B.C.E.

THE FALL OF THE ZHOU

Arose in the North China
Along Yellow River
Between Ordos Bulge and Mouth of Yellow River
Evidence
Many records, material remains discovered
Bronze metallurgy, monopolized by elite
Vast network of walled towns
Agricultural surpluses supported large troops
Shang Society
Shang-kings were warriors
Constant struggle with nobles for power
The Shang capital moved six times
Small Shang elite ruled large common population
Lavish tombs of Shang kings
Contained chariots, weapons, bronze goods
Sacrificial human victims, dogs, horses

THE SHANG DYNASTY: 1766-1122 B.C.E.

Archaeological Evidence
Discovery of Xia is still in preliminary stage
Archaeologists have found some tombs
Chinese scholars believe it existed
Supposed History
Established about 2200 B.C.E.
Legendary King Yu
The dynasty founder
A hero of flood control
Erlitou: possibly the capital city of the Xia

XIA DYNASTY

The Sage Kings
Gave the Chinese “civilization”
King Yao
A virtuous ruler bringing harmony to society
King Shun
Regulating the four seasons,
Invented weights, measures, and units of time
King Yu
Rescued China from raging floods of the Yellow River
Legendary?
Legends reflect values of society
Many may prove true!
The Xia Dynasty
Considered historical by Chinese
Possibility that the Sage Kings were from the Xia Dynasty

Imperial Family

Nobles

Peasants

The ruling elites
Royal family and allied noble families at the top
Their lavish consumption of bronze products, silk
Hereditary aristocrats with extensive landholding
Most of the land owned by the king, nobles
Peasants, the majority of population
Called the “mean” people
Landless peasants provided labor
Lived in small subterranean houses
Wood, bone, stone tools common
Iron spread in 6th century B.C.E.
Women’s World
Wine making, weaving, silkworm raising
Managing household, raising children
Elite women vs. poor women

THE SOCIAL ORDER

Merchants

Artisans

Slaves

Specialized labor
Free artisans
Artists, musicians
Craftsmen in great demand
Served the needs of ruling elites
Merchants, trade were important
Jade from Central Asia, tin from SE Asia
A few pieces of pottery from India
Merchants ranked socially lower
Slaves
Mostly war prisoners
Performed hard work
Became sacrificial victims
Suspicious towards Foreigners

OTHERS
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