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China's Early Empires

China's Early Empires
A Re-appraisal

Part of University of Cambridge Oriental Publications

Michael Loewe, Michael Nylan, Susan N. Erickson, Michèle Pirazzoli t'Serstevens, Enno Giele, T. Corey Brennan, Hsing I-tien, Anthony Snodgrass, Christopher Cullen, Marc Kalinowski, Li Jian, Vivienne Lo, Roel Sterckx, T. H. Barrett, Geoffrey Lloyd, Griet Vankeerberghen, Martin Kern, David Schaberg, Paul W. Kroll
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  • Date Published: November 2010
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521852975


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About the Authors
  • Recent archaeological discoveries, including manuscripts, have shed new light on China's history, in particular Qin and Han (221 BCE–220 CE), this volume's main focus. They make possible a deeper account of the growth of cities and of the spread of Chinese influence over distant areas. This book provides the first comprehensive survey of recent developments, evaluating the newly-found evidence in the light of earlier conclusions from China, Japan, Europe and America. Through cross-cultural comparisons and a close study of both the excavated and received literature, new conclusions are presented with respect to relatively understudied topics, such as gender, history of science, and modes of persuasion, while challenging the 'common wisdom' in such fields as Buddhism, Daoism and social history. Thus the volume provides a supplement to Volume 1 of The Cambridge History of China (1986) and shows how subsequent archaeology has enriched our perception of China's history in this period.

    • The first comprehensive survey of how the archaeological discoveries of recent decades shed new light on the history of China in the Classical era
    • Synthesises and discusses the extensive scholarship in Chinese, Japanese and other languages
    • Presents technical information in a way that is accessible to non-specialists
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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2010
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521852975
    • length: 654 pages
    • dimensions: 255 x 183 x 36 mm
    • weight: 1.5kg
    • contains: 123 b/w illus. 20 colour illus. 9 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction Michael Nylan and Michael Loewe: Part I. Archaeology:
    1. Han Dynasty tomb structures and contents Susan N. Erickson
    2. Two Eastern Han sites: Mixian and Houshiguo Michèle Pirazzoli t'Serstevens
    3. Excavated manuscripts: context and methodology Enno Giele
    4. The archaeology of the outlying lands Susan Erickson and Michael Nylan
    5. Urbanism Michèle Pirazzoli t'Serstevens
    6. The Eternal City and the City of Eternal Peace T. Corey Brennan and Hsing I-tien
    Appendix: major sources for Chang'an
    7. Imperial tombs Michael Loewe
    Appendix: tombs of the Han emperors
    8. Archaeology in China: a view from outside Anthony Snodgrass
    Part II. Administration:
    9. The laws of 186 BCE Michael Loewe
    Appendix: legal documents
    10. Administration of the family (Qihuai bisi) Michael Nylan
    Appendix: on the sources
    11. Social distinctions, groups and privileges Michael Loewe
    12. The operation of the government Michael Loewe
    Part III. Technical Arts:
    13. Numbers, numeracy and the cosmos Christopher Cullen
    Appendix: nine canons
    14. Divination and astrology
    received texts and excavated manuscripts Marc Kalinowski
    Appendix 1. Writings related to divination
    Appendix 2. Mantic practitioners
    15. Manuscripts, received texts and the healing arts Li Jian and Vivienne Lo
    Appendix: early evidence of the healing arts
    16. Yin-yang, five phases and qi Michael Nylan
    Appendix: correlative cosmology
    17. Religious practices in Han Roel Sterckx
    18. Religious change under Eastern Han and its successors
    some current perspectives and problems T. H. Barrett
    Appendix 1. Four problematic texts in the history of Daoism
    Appendix 2. Post-Han extra-canonical sources
    Part IV. Modes of Persuasion:
    19. The techniques of persuasion and the rhetoric of disorder (Luan) Geoffrey Lloyd
    20. Texts and authors in the Shiji Griet Vankeerberghen
    21. Tropes of music and poetry: from Wudi (r. 141-87 BCE) to ca. 100 CE Martin Kern
    22. The art of persuasion from 100 BCE to 100 CE Michael Nylan
    23. Prose and authority 100-300 CE David Schaberg
    24. Literary criticism and personal character in poetry ca. 100-300 CE Paul W. Kroll.

  • Editors

    Michael Nylan, University of California, Berkeley
    Michael Nylan is Professor in the History Department at the University of California at Berkeley.

    Michael Loewe, University of Cambridge
    Michael Loewe was University Lecturer in Chinese Studies at Cambridge University from 1963 until his retirement in 1990.


    Michael Loewe, Michael Nylan, Susan N. Erickson, Michèle Pirazzoli t'Serstevens, Enno Giele, T. Corey Brennan, Hsing I-tien, Anthony Snodgrass, Christopher Cullen, Marc Kalinowski, Li Jian, Vivienne Lo, Roel Sterckx, T. H. Barrett, Geoffrey Lloyd, Griet Vankeerberghen, Martin Kern, David Schaberg, Paul W. Kroll

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