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Transcript of Ancient China
So far, we have been focusing on civilizations and empires primarily based in the western half of the Eastern Hemisphere.
Most of these civilizations have originated and spread from 1 of our 4 Ancient River Valley Civilizations.
Chinese Philosophies Activity:
Fall of the Han Dynasty
Shang & Zhou Dynasties
Shang & Zhou
206 BCE - 220 CE
225 BCE - 206 BCE
We have yet to discuss China.
What do you think was happening in China while the rest of the Eastern Hemisphere was progressing?
1600 BCE - 1066 BCE
1066 BCE - 256 BCE
Overthrew Shang leaders in late 11th century BCE
Derives from the principle that the best way to control human behavior is through written law rather than through ritual, custom or ethics
A system of laws that enable the ruler to
govern efficiently and even ruthlessly
should deter people from committing crimes
Daoism / Taoism:
Advances in Engineering
Bronze Tools & Weapons
"Mandate of Heaven"
Decision made by Heaven (Supreme Being) to grant power to the ruler of China
Can also take away power if the ruler failed to conduct himself justly and in the best interests of his subjects
Religion + Politics = Connected!
Foundation of political thought (3,000 yrs)
What are the Pros & Cons of the
Mandate of Heaven?
You will be presented with a variety of present day situations.
Your Task: Through the perspective of each Chinese Philosophy, describe how each situation would be handled and resolved
Through the eyes of a Confucian, Taoist, and Legalist:
How would each philosophy handle each situation?
You see an opportunity to take something without being caught.
What do you do?
You are failing one (or more) of your classes. In each doctrine, you already know you'll be in trouble once your parents find out.
How do you handle this?
Your friends start smoking & drinking and invite you to join.
What do you do?
Qin Shi Huang
First emperor in Chinese history
*all power rests in his hands - crowned Emperor at age 13*
The Qin Wall
Qin the Tyrant
Afraid of death (Afraid to die)
Became paranoid that citizens were "out to get him"
Rumor = he never slept in the same bed twice
Would seek "immortality"
Stop @ 1:48
China named after him
Qin = Ch'in = China
Killed his own mother because he thought she was plotting against him!
Terra Cotta Warriors
Son took over reign
Overthrown by Peasants
Emperor Liu Bang
Continued positive reforms from Qin Dynasty
Economy & Innovations
Confucian Civil Service Exam
Confucian poetry and moral code test
schools built to train candidates
Confucius’s teachings, Chinese history, and Chinese law
Jobs and placement in Chinese military based on exam scores
Jobs given to those qualified - not based on Wealth or Social Status!
to 50 million
more people + not enough land
Majority of population: peasant class
Connected China to Persia, India, Rome
** Silk Road **
Extended "Qin Wall"
Renamed "Great Wall"
Extended it 1500+ miles
Added towers & soldiers
also known as "The Dynastic Cycle"
What is "Philosophy"?
How can Philosophy alter society?
Centralized around the core concept of
humans are able to
through teachings and self-creation
Focuses on the refinement of one’s
and personal virtue
Obedience to family = "filial piety"
nature and the natural order
end to conflict
by teaching people to follow path (
Accept the world
instead of trying to change it
take the minimal action necessary
Passive - go with the flow
What "message" do you think Confucius was trying to send?
How is Taoism similar to and different than Confucianism?
What types of societies can we compare to a "Legalist" society
Unified China & unified legal system
Reformed economy = new currency
Standardized weights & measures
New writing system: "Qinzhuan"
only 9,000 characters
Placed heavy importance on infrastructure
plotting against him
While their family was forced to watch
And then they were murdered too
Disagreed with Confucian teachings
Anyone caught disagreeing with him was burned alive
Why do you think the hierarchy was structured like this?
Han Social Hierarchy
On Google Classroom, there is a reading assignment posted comparing and contrasting the Fall of both the Roman Empire and the Han Dynasty.
Read over the PDF and create a graphic organizer over the reasons why the Han Dynasty fell.
Take notes over the similarities & differences between the fall of these 2 civilizations
What could go wrong?