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Chap 2 Classical China

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Ancient & Classical
China
AP World History
List of Chinese Dynasties to 600 C.E.
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Prehistoric Times-1.7 million years - the 21st century BCE
Xia Dynasty- 21st - 16th century BCE
Shang Dynasty- 16th - 11th century BCE
Zhou Dynasty -Western Zhou (11th century - 771 BCE)
Eastern Zhou- Spring and Autumn Period (770 - 476 BCE)
Warring States Period (476 - 221 BCE)
Qin Dynasty- (221 - 206 BCE)
Han Dynasty- Western Han (206 BCE - 24 CE)
Eastern Han (25 – 220CE)
{Textbook: Age of Division}
 Three Kingdoms Period- (220 – 280)
пЃ® Jin Dynasty - Western Jin (265 - 316)Eastern Jin (317 - 420)
пЃ® Northern and Southern DynastiesпЃ® Northern Dynasties (386 - 581)
пЃ® Southern Dynasties (420 - 589)
Sui Dynasty- (581 –618 CE)
Big Picture “Snap Shot”
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Patterns in Early Chinese Civilization:
 Early Civilizations…
пЃ® Mythical Xia and First Dynasty of the Shang
Patterns in Classical China:
пЃ® 3 dynastic cycles cover the many centuries
of classical China: Zhou, Qin (impact), & Han
пЃ® Political instability & frequent invasions caused the decline of the
Zhou Dynasty and promoted debated over China’s Political ills.
 Last centuries of Zhou some of China’s greatest thinkers tried
different ways to restore order & social harmony
 3 Schools of Thought – Confucianism, Daoism, & Legalism
пЃ® Shi Huanghi, the brutal founder of the Qin Dynasty, centralized
power in China, and began construction of the Great Wall.
пЃ® Wu Ti (Wu di, or Emperor Wu), most famous of the Han rulers,
supported Confucianism , won wars, & promoted peace
(P) State Building , Expansion, & Conflict
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“Political” Institutions
(structures & governance)
Most of recorded history, the
Chinese people have been the most
tightly governed people in any large
society in the World.
пЃ® Political institutions became one of
classical China’s hallmarks.
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One of the most permanent aspects
of Chinese culture was the belief in
the unity & the desirability of a central
government in the hands of an
emperor assisted by an educated,
professional bureaucracy.
(P) State Building , Expansion, & Conflict
Continued…
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Type of system- Monarchy/Absolute Rule
Empires- Dynasty Cycles
Nationalism- Most believe in unified China
Revolts and revolutions- “Mandate of Heaven”
Regional, trans-regional, global structures & organizationsпЃ® Xenophobia (ic)-an intense fear or dislike of foreign
people, their customs and culture, or foreign things
пЃ® Foreign Connections- Tributary SystemsпЃ® Fighting with Xiongnu, (Barbarians) {gift sending}
пЃ® Silk Road- Mostly indirect communication through
many cultures, including Central Asia, India, Persia,
Fertile Crescent, & Rome
(E) Creation, expansion, and interaction of
“Economic” systems
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Agricultural – China’s classical economy focused on agriculture. All
Chinese philosophies extolled the virtues of peasants and their
world.
Trade & Commerce- Extensive internal trade system, even while
maintaining some ambivalence about merchants and commercial
values
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Silk Road- Only connection to the Roman Empire via trade.
Labor system- Sharp Class division between the 1) Gentry
Scholars - Landowning Aristocrats & educated bureaucrats, 2)
Peasant farmers- the laboring masses, 3) Artisans & Craftsman,
4) Merchants & Traders
Industrialization- Many technological advances, including oxdrawn plows, water-powered mills, and paper in ancient times.
(R) Development & Interaction of Cultures
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“Religion and Culture”
пЃ® Belief systems, Philosophies, & ideologies Chinese
culture began coalescing during the last, calamitous
centuries of Zhou rule. During this time, the 3 Schools of
Thought (Philosophies) arose, each of which emphasized
the role of education to achieve social ends.
пЃ® Confucianism, an ethical system based on relationships
and personal virtue, became the predominate philosophy
пЃ® Legalism, countered Confucianism by favoring an
authoritarian state and harsh rule.
пЃ® Daoism, taught harmony with nature and humble living.
Laozi was the most popular figure.
 Buddhism, began to enter China later 100 C.E…
пЃ® Tang Dynasty 618 C.E. (Golden Age of Buddhism)
(R) Development & Interaction of
Cultures Continued…
Material
пЃ® Architecture/BuildingsпЃ® Great Wall of China (Started with Qin Dynasty)
пЃ® Many Roads & Canals (Han Dynasty, esp. Wu Di 141-87)
 Grand Canal – (Completed by Sui Dynasty
пЃ® Art in classical China was mostly decorative, and appeared in many
forms, including calligraphy, carved jade and ivory, and silk screens.
пЃ® Science & key technologies- Mathematics emphasized the practical
over the theoretical, and the ancient Chinese were particularly adept at
astronomy.
пЃ® Many innovations! (See Invention Worksheet)
 Imperial University- (Han Dynasty) –
пЃ® Civil Service Exams (3 levels)
пЃ® Entry test for government jobs
 Studied Chinese Classics, Confucius etc…
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(R) Development & transformation
of social structures “Culture”
Gender Roles and relationsпЃ® Patriarchal society- overall subordinate fathers & husbands (brothers)
 Women’s roles- make a proper marriage that would strengthen the family’s
alliances (Widowed were allowed to marry?)
 Elite (Ban Zhao’s Example) Upper class women- tutored in writing, arts, &
music
Family & kinship (Clans)- Tight family structure was valued
пЃ® Gender relations- Filial Piety (5 Cardinal Relationships)
Racial & Ethic constructions – Xenophobia & Ethnocentricism
Social & Economics classes- Basically hierarchical, deferential & patriarchal
пЃ® Labor system- Sharp Class division between the 1) Gentry Scholars Landowning Aristocrats & educated bureaucrats, 2) Peasant farmers- the
laboring masses, 3) Artisans & Craftsman, 4) Merchants & Traders
Communication:
Language-Early Ancient times: proto-Sino-Tibetan,
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Zhou Dynasty: Archaic Chinese, Qin: attempt to return to “Old Chinese” Now about
Later called “Middle Chinese” Now: 11 different dialects Mandarin and Cantonese
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Writing system: logographic/Calligraphy(Similar since Shang and standard Qin)
(I) “Interactions” between
Humans and environment
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Population Change (Demography)- Major
increase in Population during Han Dynasty 60
million listed on census
Diseases- Malaria, S.T.D.’s
Migrations- Xiongnu
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Settlement patterns- Early Near Water
Technology (impact on environment) [See Change]
Overall Picture
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China’s politics & culture meshed readily, especially
around the emergence of Confucian bureaucracy.
Economic innovation did not disrupt the emphasis on
order & stability, and family structures were closely
linked to political & cultural goals.
Classical Chinese civilization evolved with very little
outside contact. Thought internal disagreement existed,
most Chinese saw the world as a large island of
civilization (China) surrounded by barbarians with
nothing to offer save periodic invasions
Continuity
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Early Regional cultural hearth of Northern
China
Irrigation based advanced settled urban culture
Conflict between settled & nomadic cultures
Chinese dynastic cycle
Change-over-Time
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Increase in population
Decline in status of women
Increase in Patriarchy
Increase in trade routes (Silk Road, Canals [Grand])
Migrations of the Huns (Xiongnu)
Diffusion of early religions and philosophies
Rise & Fall of Empires – Chinese Dynastic Cycle
Environmental: Deforestation, Irrigation,
Wall/Building materials
Major Comparisons and Analysis
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Han Empire vs. Roman Empire
3 Schools of Thought v Buddhism
Nomads vs. Settled
3 Schools of Thought vs. each other
Chinese Dynasties vs. each other
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