China from the Sui to the Ming Dynasty – 581 – 1644

  1. The Sui and Tang Empires
    1. Reunification under the Sui and Tang
      1. Sui reunification based on Confucianism but with heavy Buddhist influence.
      2. Sui overspent on public works & was unable to defend itself
      3. Tang Taizong took control and established the Tang Dynasty in 618.
        1. Territorial Expansion
        2. Turkic influences
    2. Buddhism in the Tang Empire
      1. Tang Emperors used Buddhism for legitimacy (Boddhisatva)
        1. Buddhist monasteries that assisted received gifts & tax exemptions
        2. Mahayana Buddhism
        3. Trade & Buddhist Spread
    3. Cosmopolitan Chang An & world trade
      1. The city & its people
      2. Trade: importing wine, tea, spices, exporting tea, silks, porcelain, jade
  2. Central Asia & China: Power Politics
    1. The Uigur and Tibetan Empires
      1. Uigurs in mid 8th century
      2. Tibet 600-800
    2. Change in China 750-879
      1. Reassertion of Confucianism & decline of Buddhism
        1. tax & donation problems
        2. legitimization of women in Politics (Wu Zhao)
        3. Confucian Scholars & propaganda
        4. Neo-Confucianism: Making a religion out of a philosophy
          1. Answering questions about life
          2. Answering questions about physical nature’
            1. Zhu Shi (1130-1200 – li & qi)
            2. Canonization of texts & examination system
  3. The End of the Tang (879-907) and the Song Empire
    1. Decline into warlord territories
    2. Competing States: Liao, Jin, & Song
    3. The dominance of Liao (916-1121) and Jin (1127-1215)
    4. Song Society & Industry
      1. Technology including mechanical clock, shipbuilding, use of rockets & gunpowder
      2. Song empire was more interested in trade and education than on military matters – remained relatively weak but made great progress.
        1. Buddhism (Chan/Zen) & Neo-Confucianism
        2. Civil Service Exams
        3. Population Growth
        4. credit & paper money
      3. Status of Women in decline
  4. Emergence of Korea, Japan, Vietnam as “satellite” states heavily influenced by Chinese culture: writing, philosophy, power
  5. Mongol conquest, 1169-1279 & rule to 1368
  6. The Ming Dynasty
    1. Zhu Yuanzhang (Ming Hung-Wu)
      1. Farmer, Buddhist Monk, & Charismatic Leader
      2. General dissatisfaction with Mongol Rule
      3. Refugee problems.
    2. The Ming Dynasty 1368-1644
      1. Under Hung-Wu, reactive to Mongols
        1. Rebuild Chinese economy based on agriculture rather than trade
        2. Encouraged resettlement of North China
      2. Under Ming Yongle (1360-1424)
        1. Chinese foreign policy
          1. Return of the tribute system
          2. Zheng He & the 7 Great Voyages
        2. Moved Capital to Beijing & built Forbidden City
        3. Destroyed the remaining Yuan Dynasty in Mongolia
        4. Sponsored the Yongle Encyclopedia