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Buddhist Religious Practice in Imperial China  

Natasha Heller

Buddhist practice transformed the religious landscape in China, introducing new forms of mental cultivation and new ritual technologies within an altered cosmology of spiritual goals. ... More

The Canton Trade, 1700–1842  

Paul A. Van Dyke

Online publication date:
May 2017
In 1684, China reopened its doors to trade with the outside world, which had a huge impact on the development of global commerce. Canton quickly emerged as one of the few ports in the world ... More

China’s Imperial Institution  

Yuri Pines

Emperors were the symbolic and administrative pivot of the Chinese empire ever since its establishment in 221 bce. They were arguably the most powerful human beings on earth. Their nominal ... More

Civil Law and Jurisprudence in Imperial China  

Nap-yin Lau

In terms of jurisdiction and punishment, the border between civil and criminal laws in imperial China is not clear cut. The same officials can handle both civil and criminal cases, and ... More

Daoism and Popular Religion in Imperial China  

Terry Kleeman

Online publication date:
Jun 2017
Throughout the course of premodern China’s history, the planning and performance of religious ritual has been a primary concern. These offerings of bloody victuals, drink, and, later, ... More

Ethnic Groups of Manchuria  

Juha Janhunen

Ethnic groups of the geographical region of Manchuria can be understood in relation to their cultural, demographic, and linguistic differences and similarities; historical formation; and ... More

Family and Lineage in Late Imperial China  

David Faure and Xi He

Online publication date:
Jan 2020
Like all peoples, Chinese people value their families. Unlike many other peoples, they see them in the wider context of their lineages, that is to say, in terms of descent lines traced from ... More

Famine in Imperial and Modern China  

Kathryn Edgerton-Tarpley

Online publication date:
Mar 2017
Famines have played an important role in China’s history. Because the Confucian classics interpreted natural disasters as warnings from Heaven, in ancient and imperial China feeding the ... More

Fiscal Policy and Institutions in Imperial China  

Taisu Zhang

Up until the final four decades of the Qing Dynasty, fiscal extraction in imperial China was primarily a matter of taxing agricultural production, generally in the form of an annual ... More

Gender and Social Life in Imperial China  

Weijing Lu

Social life in imperial China was structured on the Confucian gender principles of the separation of male and female and the division of “inner and outer” spheres. Homosociality prevailed ... More

Imperial Maritime China  

Angela Schottenhammer

Imperial China has a long-standing, multifaceted, and interesting imperial maritime history. Of particular importance in this context are the commercial dimensions of China’s maritime ... More

Japanese Pirates and the East Asian Maritime World, 1200–1600  

Peter D. Shapinsky

Historians translate a variety of terms from 13th- through 17th-century Japan, China, Korea, and Europe as “Japanese pirates” (e.g., Jp. kaizoku, Kr. waegu, Ch. wokou). These constructs ... More

Local Elites and Scholarship in Late Imperial China  

Steven B. Miles

Online publication date:
Jun 2017
Before the end of the Tang dynasty, cultural production was largely a court-centered activity. This began to change as the nature of China’s political, social, and cultural elite, the ... More

Military Technology and Organization in Imperial China  

Peter Lorge

Warfare and the military were at the center of the imperial Chinese state, though their significance was downplayed by government officials and the literati. Chinese dynasties fielded ... More

Power and Trade between Qing China and Chosŏn Korea  

Nianshen Song

Scholars often regard the Qing-Korean relationship as the most representative instance of the so-called tributary system, the Sino-centric hierarchical world order in early modern East ... More

Publishing and Popular Literature in Imperial China  

Cynthia Brokaw

Online publication date:
Oct 2017
Although popular literature circulated in manuscript from very early in Chinese history, the invention of woodblock printing or xylography in the 7th century greatly facilitated the ... More

Schools and Learning in Imperial China  

Linda Walton

From the consolidation of the Han empire (206 bce–220 ce) through the collapse of the Qing (1644–1911), ideas about education associated with Confucius (c. 551–479 bce) and his followers ... More

Taiwan and Modern China  

Emma J. Teng

The China–Taiwan relationship continues to be one of the most highly fraught international political issues in the post-Cold War era, and a potential flashpoint in US–China affairs. Lying ... More

Zheng He and Ming China’s Voyages in the Early 15th Century  

Geoff Wade

Online publication date:
May 2020
Over the first three decades of the 15th century, Ming China dispatched a succession of naval fleets through the Southeast Asian seas and across the Indian Ocean, reaching South Asia, the ... More

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