China has changed in certain ways and remained the same in others from the early Golden Ages to the late 1900s. China has experienced a series of cultural and political transformations, shaping the lives of many Chinese citizens. Culturally, the country’s art and literature hardly changed for almost eight hundred years. Along with their culture, China remained politically the same from the beginning of the Golden Ages all the way until the 1800s. On the other hand, China’s government and society were restructured after new leaders took over. From a monarch to total communism, China’s society had a multitude of new ideas and policies they had to adapt to.
“ This gave rise to the premise that if the people of an empire are unhappy, they have to right to overthrow the ruler and give the Mandate of Heaven to a new and better ruler. Confucius believed that in order to have a good society and good life, there must be a benevolent ruler who will lead the empire to prosperity. History continues to repeat itself in China by an empire rising and prospering and eventually becoming corrupt. Then the people award the Mandate of Heaven to a new ruler who will go through the same cycle of creation and degeneration. This tracks with another Chinese philosophy, Yin and Yang, which states that opposite forces—such as benevolence and despotism—are interconnected in the natural world. All of this combines to emphasize the relevance of historic repetition to the development of China.
Throughout the development of Chinese history, dynasties or ruling families, have had major effects on China’s social, political and economic systems. For instance, several notable dynasties include the Zhou, Qin, and Han dynasty. Nevertheless, the sentiment favoring a certain dynasty led to debate between individuals. Thus, several individuals avouch that the Han dynasty had the most profound impact on the development of China, while others argue that it was the Qin dynasty who had a greater effect.
For many decades, China has always been technologically and economically ahead of Europe. The invention of gunpowder, printing, and the compass started in China and was later dispersed throughout Europe. These inventions changed China as much as they changed Europe. These inventions also caused a gap between China and Europe. By the late eighteenth century, industrial revolution first started its spread from Europe.The transformations within Europe began to further accelerate while China was falling behind. In Europe, economic transformation was accompanied by social transformation. The social and demographic changes that were taking place, created the pressure for political change as well. Europe was expanding both demographically and economically, which strengthening their power in the global order. Conversely, China constrained itself from the outside world and focus on internal progresses ranging from agriculture to social classes. Why were industries in China more labor-intensive than those in Europe? In addition to its diverse geography and the belief of being self-sufficient, China struggled to transition to experiment-cum-science-based invention as well as rejecting the opportunity to create bonds and capital markets with other nations.
Throughout pre-unification China, the Mandate of Heaven was used as a justification in the acquisition and eradication of dynasties. The Mandate of Heaven, the idea that a ruler reigned only with the blessing of the heavens, was seen as a way to legitimize a dynasty and its ruler. Although it may seem as if a heavenly mandate gives a ruler absolute power, this is actually not the case. Instead, Mencius, a philosopher who emphasizes benevolent governance, asserts that a ruler can both acquire and lose the heavenly mandate based on his behavior and the treatment of his subjects. If a ruler is not equitable, in other words, the Mandate of Heaven can be withdrawn and bestowed upon a more qualified ruler. Thus, although the mandate sounds
From 600 BCE to 600 CE, China experienced changes in its political system in terms of the dissimilar ruling styles of different leaders, the rule under Legalism, and the influence of philosophical thinking like Daoism. These changes, influenced by aspects of the world and its own region, shaped China into its Classical state. In contrast, the concept of the Mandate of Heaven, the civil service system, and the significance of unity through a strong central government remained constant throughout China’s Classical period. These continuities followed through, staying essentially the same as an important part of China’s identity.
China is a very influential world power and has been for many years. The Classical and Post-Classical years in China were a time of achievement and advancement, especially in the religious movement. Post-Classical and Classical China were very important historical periods, and their religions, and the effect of them on the world around them highlighted that importance.
2. Albert M. Craig, William A. Graham, Donald Kagan, Steven Ozment, Frank M. Turner. “China‘s First Empire”. The Heritage of World Civilizations. 1: 1152 (2007, 2005, 2002) Pearson Education, Inc. New
During Classical China, the main religions that were believed in included Taoism and Confucianism. While Confucianism wrote about “earthly life”, morals, and spoke of the 5 key relationships, Taoism was its spiritual counterpart. When it came to politics, emperors tended to favor Taoism, due to it’s lack of political threat. In the beginning of Classical China, starting with the Zhou dynasty, China ran it’s civilization using feudal system. However, it soon showed its faults with betrayal and that loyalty can’t be truly promised. Since then, Classical China evolved into using bureaucratic political system, in which people could be replaced throughout the system causing a stronger central government which positions that could be replaced. Despite that, Legalism was thought of to be useful, because of it’s ability of control and discipline. Even though China had religious beliefs, they mainly
The Chinese Empire is a land of innovation, mystery, culture, and art. From mysterious trade partners to military expansionists, the Chinese people have faced a constant evolution of change over their vast history. China’s innovative and advanced mindset has made the West wonder in awe for centuries, and it is difficult to realize that, unlike the West, the East has been the center of technological and industrial advancements for centuries until their eventual decline. Due to China’s vibrant and long past, many have debated which time period was China’s strongest age, and it is difficult to answer this question without clear and precise evidence. Although many Dynasties have been both influential
Gascoigne, Bamber, and Christina Gascoigne. The Dynasties of China: A History. New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2003.
Ancient China was always able to flourish as a powerful economic and imperialistic country. Behind this great amount of early success were great dynasties that played great roles in China’s history. China has always been highly influenced by its great ancient dynasties. These dynasties were able to establish monetary systems, road and canal systems for trade, and also build great elaborate historic structures that still stand today. They also influenced different philosophies such as Taoism and Confucianism. In the long history of China, many great dynasties appear that have helped a lot to the development of the whole country. Among them, there are
Some westerners believe that Chinese women’s role in society mirrors that of western women’s. This especially the result of westerners understanding of Confucian beliefs. While the beliefs of society at the time do play a role, the role of women in ancient and imperial China changed throughout the centuries. Some dynasties saw women controlling empires and having immense power while others saw women confined to the home. This change is mirrored in late-imperial China. Late-imperial China (960-1911) saw a gradual increase in the restriction of women’s roles in many aspects of society.
The Chinese people have experienced rapid change, in government and culture in the 20th century. Although the common people seemed to have risen up against oppression from the ruling class, liberty and equality often remains out of their grasp. For centuries the dynastic cycle has dominated the culture and collective consciousness of the Chinese people. This process is characterized by unification, followed by prosperity and success, followed by corruption and instability, and finally rebellion and overthrow. This gives way to a new dynasty that was said to have received the mandate of heaven. This cycle, in some ways, ended with the fall of the Qing dynasty. This marked the end of over 2000 years of
China has rebuilt itself from having an unstable economy, a collapsed government followed by a few turbulent years of corruption and political instability to having the world’s largest population, state-of-the-art technological advances, an incredibly growing economy and several influential leaders. The country has been credited for many inventions indispensable today such as paper, the compass, mechanical clocks, and gunpowder among others and always thought to be ahead of its time technologically. The Chinese government continues to place emphasis on innovation by allowing its people to do research on various subjects such as stem-cell research and gene therapy; these are widely controversial in other