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Landscape and Power in Early China: The Crisis and Fall of the Western Zhou 1045-771 BC

Landscape and Power in Early China: The Crisis and Fall of the Western Zhou 1045-771 BC

Hardback

By (author) Li Feng

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  • Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Format: Hardback | 424 pages
  • Dimensions: 178mm x 250mm x 34mm | 998g
  • Publication date: 30 September 2006
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge
  • ISBN 10: 0521852722
  • ISBN 13: 9780521852722
  • Illustrations note: 44 b/w illus. 19 maps

Product description

The ascendancy of the Western Zhou in Bronze Age China, 1045-771 BC, was a critical period in the development of Chinese civilisation and culture. This book addresses the complex relationship between geography and political power in the context of the crisis and fall of the Western Zhou state. Drawing on the latest archaeological discoveries, the book shows how inscribed bronze vessels can be used to reveal changes in the political space of the period and explores literary and geographical evidence to produce a coherent understanding of the Bronze Age past. By taking an interdisciplinary approach which embraces archaeology, history and geography, the book thoroughly reinterprets late Western Zhou history and probes the causes of its gradual decline and eventual fall. Supported throughout by maps created from the GIS datasets and by numerous on-site photographs, Landscape and Power in Early China gives significant insights into this important Bronze Age society.

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Author information

Feng Li is Assistant Professor of Early Chinese Cultural History at the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University. He has undertaken extensive fieldwork on Bronze Age sites and is the author of numerous research articles on the Bronze Age.

Review quote

'I found Landscape and Power in Early China to be one of the best scholarly works I have read in recent years ... this is a prime example of a study that is highly professional in addressing all the minute details of its subject matter but, on the other hand, illuminates the broad picture in a way that is accessible to a much larger audience. Li Feng should be commended for providing a coherent discussion that should become essential reading for all students of Chinese history. It will also be used, I hope, in comparative frameworks by scholars working on other periods and in other parts of the world.' The Journal of Asian Studies

Table of contents

Introduction; 1. Foundation of the Western Zhou state: constructing the political space; 2. Disorder and decline: the political crisis of the Western Zhou state; 3. Enemies at the gate: the war against the Xianyun and the north-western frontier; 4. The fall of the Western Zhou: partisan struggle and spatial collapse; 5. The eastward migration: reconfiguring the Western Zhou state; 6. The legacy of the Western Zhou; Conclusion; Appendices 1-3; Bibliography; Indexes.