New Course in East Asian History



Spring 2014

HIEA 2559 (1)

New Course in East Asian History

"Social History of Imperial China"

Cong Ellen Zhang

This course introduces some of the major characteristics of Chinese society during the country’s long imperial period. We will begin the semester by looking at early visions of an ideal society and proceed to discuss the lived experiences of individuals, families, and communities in the context of social and cultural changes. Major topics include family and kinship organization, migration and population growth, urban and rural communities, and daily life of the elites and the general populace, to name a few. Required readings include Patricia Ebrey, Cambridge Illustrated History of China, Michael Lowe, Bing: from Farmer’s Son to Magistrate in Han China, Charles Benn, China’s Golden Age: Everyday Life in the Tang Dynasty, and Ida Pruitt, Daughter of Han: the Autobiography of a Chinese Working Woman. Final grades for the class will be based on papers, quizzes, and class participation. No prior knowledge of Chinese history is required.



Corcoran Department of History
University of Virginia
Nau Hall - South Lawn
Charlottesville, VA 22904



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