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Asian history

See below for a selection of the latest books from Asian history category. Presented with a red border are the Asian history books that have been lovingly read and reviewed by the experts at Lovereading. With expert reading recommendations made by people with a passion for books and some unique features Lovereading will help you find great Asian history books and those from many more genres to read that will keep you inspired and entertained. And it's all free!

Imperial China

Imperial China

Author: Dr. Peter Lorge Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/07/2021

In 221 BCE, the Qin state conquered its neighbours and created the first unified Chinese empire in history. So began the imperial era, where dynasties claiming divine assent ruled for more than 2,000 years. Borders shifted and emperors struggled to exert control over every region of their diverse territories. Elites held that they were inheritors of a rich, pre-imperial culture, while their society produced world-changing inventions such as the compass, printing, gunpowder and the gun. And imperial China itself was altered as it came into contact with others through trade, exploration and war. For anyone curious about this fascinating period, Peter Lorge introduces imperial China's major ruling dynasties, religions, arts, thinkers, inventions, military advancements, economic developments and historians.

Great State

Great State

Author: Timothy Brook Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/07/2021

China is one of the oldest states in the world. It achieved its approximate current borders with the Ascendancy of the Yuan dynasty in the 13th century, and despite the passing of one Imperial dynasty to the next, it has maintained them for the eight centuries since. Even the European colonial powers at the height of their power could not move past coastal enclaves. Thus, China remained China through the Ming, the Qing, the Republic, the Occupation, and Communism. But, despite the desires of some of the most powerful people in the Great State through the ages, China has never been alone in the world. It has had to contend with invaders from the steppe and the challenges posed by foreign traders and imperialists. Indeed, its rulers for the majority of the last eight centuries have not been Chinese. Timothy Brook examines China's relationship with the world from the Yuan through to the present by following the stories of ordinary and extraordinary people navigating the spaces where China met and meets the world. Bureaucrats, horse traders, spiritual leaders, explorers, pirates, emperors, invaders, migrant workers, traitors, and visionaries: this is a history of China as no one has told it before.

Performing Filial Piety in Northern Song China

Performing Filial Piety in Northern Song China

Author: Cong Ellen Zhang Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/06/2021

Educated men in Song-dynasty China (960-1279) traveled frequently in search of scholarly and bureaucratic success. These extensive periods of physical mobility took them away from their families, homes, and native places for long periods of time, preventing them from fulfilling their most sacred domestic duty: filial piety to their parents. In this deeply grounded work, Cong Ellen Zhang locates the tension between worldly ambition and family duty at the heart of elite social and cultural life. Drawing on more than two thousand funerary biographies and other official and private writing, Zhang argues that the predicament in which Song literati found themselves diminished neither the importance of filial piety nor the appeal of participating in examinations and government service. On the contrary, the Northern Song witnessed unprecedented literati activity and state involvement in the bolstering of ancient forms of filial performances and the promotion of new ones. The result was the triumph of a new filial ideal: luyang. By labeling highly coveted honors and privileges attainable solely through scholarly and official accomplishments as the most celebrated filial acts, the luyang rhetoric elevated office-holding men to be the most filial of sons. Consequently, the proper performance of filiality became essential to scholar-official identity and self-representation. Zhang convincingly demonstrates that this reconfiguration of elite male filiality transformed filial piety into a status- and gender-based virtue, a change that had wide implications for elite family life and relationships in the Northern Song. The separation of elite men from their parents and homes also made the idea of native place increasingly fluid. This development in turn generated an interest in family preservation as filial performance. Individually initiated, kinship- and native place-based projects flourished and coalesced with the moral and cultural visions of leading scholar-intellectuals, providing the social and familial foundations for the ascendancy of Neo-Confucianism as well as new cultural norms that transformed Chinese society in the Song and beyond.

Waiting for Swaraj

Waiting for Swaraj

Author: Aparna Vaidik Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/06/2021

Set in British India of the 1920s, Waiting for Swaraj follows the cadence and tempo of the lives of the intrepid revolutionaries of the Hindustan Republican Association and the Hindustan Republican Socialist Association who challenged the British Raj. It seeks to comprehend the revolutionaries' self-conception - what did it mean to be a revolutionary? How did a revolutionary live out the vision of revolution, what was their everyday like, did life in revolution transform an individual, what was their truth and how was it different from that of the others? The book locates the essence of being a revolutionary not just in the spectacular moments when the revolutionaries threw a bomb or carried out a political assassination, but in the everyday conversations, banter, anecdotes, and in the stray fragments of the life in underground. It demonstrates how 'waiting' was the crucible that forged a revolutionary.

Chairman Mao's Children

Chairman Mao's Children

Author: Bin (Emory University, Atlanta) Xu Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/06/2021

In the 1960s and 1970s, around 17 million Chinese youths were mobilized or forced by the state to migrate to rural villages and China's frontiers. Bin Xu tells the story of how this 'sent-down' generation have come to terms with their difficult past. Exploring representations of memory including personal life stories, literature, museum exhibits, and acts of commemoration, he argues that these representations are defined by a struggle to reconcile worthiness with the political upheavals of the Mao years. These memories, however, are used by the state to construct an official narrative that weaves this generation's experiences into an upbeat story of the 'China dream'. This marginalizes those still suffering and obscures voices of self-reflection on their moral-political responsibility for their actions. Xu provides careful analysis of this generation of 'Chairman Mao's children', caught between the political and the personal, past and present, nostalgia and regret, and pride and trauma.

Timber and Forestry in Qing China

Timber and Forestry in Qing China

Author: Meng Zhang, K. Sivaramakrishnan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/06/2021

In the Qing period (1644-1912), China's population tripled, and the flurry of new development generated unprecedented demand for timber. Standard environmental histories have often depicted this as an era of reckless deforestation, akin to the resource misuse that devastated European forests at the same time. This comprehensive new study shows that the reality was more complex: as old-growth forests were cut down, new economic arrangements emerged to develop renewable timber resources. Historian Meng Zhang traces the trade routes that connected population centers of the Lower Yangzi Delta to timber supplies on China's southwestern frontier. She documents innovative property rights systems and economic incentives that convinced landowners to invest years in growing trees. Delving into rare archives to reconstruct business histories, she considers both the formal legal mechanisms and the informal interactions that helped balance economic profit with environmental management. Of driving concern were questions of sustainability: How to maintain a reliable source of timber across decades and centuries? And how to sustain a business network across a thousand miles? This carefully constructed study makes a major contribution to Chinese economic and environmental history and to world-historical discourses on resource management, early modern commercialization, and sustainable development.

Timber and Forestry in Qing China

Timber and Forestry in Qing China

Author: Meng Zhang, K. Sivaramakrishnan Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/06/2021

In the Qing period (1644-1912), China's population tripled, and the flurry of new development generated unprecedented demand for timber. Standard environmental histories have often depicted this as an era of reckless deforestation, akin to the resource misuse that devastated European forests at the same time. This comprehensive new study shows that the reality was more complex: as old-growth forests were cut down, new economic arrangements emerged to develop renewable timber resources. Historian Meng Zhang traces the trade routes that connected population centers of the Lower Yangzi Delta to timber supplies on China's southwestern frontier. She documents innovative property rights systems and economic incentives that convinced landowners to invest years in growing trees. Delving into rare archives to reconstruct business histories, she considers both the formal legal mechanisms and the informal interactions that helped balance economic profit with environmental management. Of driving concern were questions of sustainability: How to maintain a reliable source of timber across decades and centuries? And how to sustain a business network across a thousand miles? This carefully constructed study makes a major contribution to Chinese economic and environmental history and to world-historical discourses on resource management, early modern commercialization, and sustainable development.

Chinese Civilization in Vistas of World Civilization

Chinese Civilization in Vistas of World Civilization

Author: Liang Chang Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/06/2021

This book aims to introduce all aspects of Chinese civilization in a way that is easiest for readers in the Western world to understand. The first chapter of this book introduces the emergence, historical evolution and characteristics of Chinese civilization. The second chapter introduces the knowledge pedigree of Chinese civilization, which is characterized by human-centered and historical and social practice. The third chapter introduces the value pedigree of Chinese civilization with ethics and responsibility as the core and the fourth chapter introduces the national governance system of Chinese civilization in selecting and appointing talents. The fifth chapter introduces China's self-organization of mutual assistance and mutual benefit and the final chapter discusses the relationship between Chinese civilization and world civilization in the new era. Since entering the 21st century, China's economic aggregate and political influence have increased day by day. However, for a long time, the Western world's view of China has been full of various prejudices and misunderstandings which are produced by the ignorance of the history and current situation of Chinese civilization. It is hoped that readers can profoundly change their views on China after reading this book.

Language, Nation, Race

Language, Nation, Race

Author: Atsuko Ueda Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 29/06/2021

A free open access ebook is available upon publication. Learn more at www.luminosoa.org. Language, Nation, Race explores the various language reforms at the onset of Japanese modernity, a time when a national language (kokugo) was produced to standardize Japanese. Faced with the threat of Western colonialism, Meiji intellectuals proposed various reforms to standardize the Japanese language in order to quickly educate the illiterate masses. This book liberates these language reforms from the predetermined category of the nation, for such a notion had yet to exist as a clear telos to which the reforms aspired. Atsuko Ueda draws on, while critically intervening in, the vast scholarship of language reform that engaged with numerous works of postcolonial and cultural studies. She examines the first two decades of the Meiji period, with specific focus on the issue of race, contending that no analysis of imperialism or nationalism is possible without it.

Sun Yatsen, Robert Wilcox and Their Failed Revolutions, Honolulu and Canton 1895

Sun Yatsen, Robert Wilcox and Their Failed Revolutions, Honolulu and Canton 1895

Author: Patrick (Queen Mary University of London, UK) Anderson Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/06/2021

Dynamite on the Tropic of Cancer is the radical, explosive retelling of the first decade of the 'Father of Modern China' Dr Sun Yatsen's globally shaped formation as a professional revolutionist, and of the impact of the adult Sun's revolutionary relationship with Hawai'i and with his varied communities of supporters there during its own most turbulent political decade, the 1890s, years in which this remote island nation transformed from native monarchy, via sovereign independent republic, to become the USA's first overseas territory. Drawn from neglected primary sources, Dynamite reveals the hitherto untold story of the secret revolutionary alliance forged in Honolulu's backstreets between Sun's Xingzhonghui and the idiosyncratic italophile soldier Robert Wilcox, Hawai'i's Garibaldi and leader of the Kanaka/Native Hawaiian counterrevolution of January 1895. This failed uprising to restore Hawai'i's tragic last Queen, witnessed firsthand by Sun Yatsen, became the archetype upon which ten months later Sun would base his own first attempt at armed insurrection in China: the Canton uprising of 26 October 1895. With an epic sweep across the Pacific's Tropic of Cancer, Dynamite is the most important study yet written on the origins of Sun Yatsen's Chinese Revolution and its dynamic interface with Hawaiian history.

Chinese History And Civilisation: An Urban Perspective

Chinese History And Civilisation: An Urban Perspective

The emergence of a city marks the beginning of a civilisation. The city, especially the leading cities of a country, is also where the major features of a country are contained and where historical events play out. This book introduces readers to the progress of China's civilisation over more than 5000 years of history, through the rise and development of its cities.From the prehistoric Yangshuo and Longshan periods all the way to the People's Republic, this book outlines major events and developments to highlight the evolution of the Chinese civilisation. Using historical dynasties and urban dynamics as vertical dimensions, it examines major historical events, economic developments, territorial changes, and other developments over China's long history. It also discusses the uniqueness of China's history and compares its civilisations to Western experiences.

The Silk Roads

The Silk Roads

Author: Geordie Torr Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 28/06/2021