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The Age of Confucian Rule: The Song Transformation of China

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The Age of Confucian Rule: The Song Transformation of China Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Just over a thousand years ago, the Song dynasty emerged as the most advanced civilization on earth. Within two centuries, China was home to nearly half of all humankind. In this concise history, we learn why the inventiveness of this era has been favorably compared with the European Renaissance, which in many ways the Song transformation surpassed.

With the chaotic dissolution of the Tang dynasty, the old aristocratic families vanished. A new class of scholar-officials--products of a meritocratic examination system--took up the task of reshaping Chinese tradition by adapting the precepts of Confucianism to a rapidly changing world. Through fiscal reforms, these elites liberalized the economy, eased the tax burden, and put paper money into circulation. Their redesigned capitals buzzed with traders, while the education system offered advancement to talented men of modest means. Their rationalist approach led to inventions in printing, shipbuilding, weaving, ceramics manufacture, mining, and agriculture. With a realist's eye, they studied the natural world and applied their observations in art and science. And with the souls of diplomats, they chose peace over war with the aggressors on their borders. Yet persistent military threats from these nomadic tribes--which the Chinese scorned as their cultural inferiors--redefined China's understanding of its place in the world and solidified a sense of what it meant to be Chinese.

The Age of Confucian Rule is an essential introduction to this transformative era. "A scholar should congratulate himself that he has been born in such a time" (Zhao Ruyu, 1194).

Synopsis:

Just over a thousand years ago, the Song dynasty emerged as the most advanced civilization on earth. Within two centuries, China was home to nearly half of all humankind. This book is an essential introduction to this transformative era.

About the Author

Dieter Kuhn is Professor and Chair of Chinese Studies, University of Würzburg.Timothy Brook is Professor of History and Republic of China Chair at the University of British Columbia.

University of British Columbia

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • 1. A Time of Turmoil
  • 2. Model Rulers
  • 3. Reforming into Collapse
  • 4. The Song in the South
  • 5. Three Doctrines
  • 6. Education and Examination
  • 7. Life Cycle Rituals
  • 8. Exploring the World Within and Without
  • 9. Transforming the Capitals
  • 10. A Changing World of Production
  • 11. Money and Taxes
  • 12. Private Lives in the Public Sphere
  • Conclusion
  • Dynastic Rulers
  • Measures
  • Pronunciation Guide
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780674031463
Author:
Kuhn, Dieter
Publisher:
Belknap Press
Editor:
Brook, Timothy
Author:
Brook, Timothy
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
History
Subject:
Intellectual life
Subject:
Asia - China
Subject:
China
Subject:
China - History - Song dynasty, 960-1279
Subject:
China Intellectual life 221 B.C.-960 A.D.
Subject:
Medieval
Subject:
World History - China
Subject:
HISTORY / Social History
Subject:
Religion-Confucianism
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Cloth
Series:
History of Imperial China
Series Volume:
4
Publication Date:
March 2009
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
23 halftones, 10 maps
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

» History and Social Science » Asia » China » Imperial to 1911
» History and Social Science » Politics » General
» History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Medieval
» History and Social Science » World History » China
» History and Social Science » World History » General
» History and Social Science » World History » Medieval and Renaissance

The Age of Confucian Rule: The Song Transformation of China New Hardcover
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Product details 368 pages Belknap Press - English 9780674031463 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Just over a thousand years ago, the Song dynasty emerged as the most advanced civilization on earth. Within two centuries, China was home to nearly half of all humankind. This book is an essential introduction to this transformative era.
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