Making the World "Chinese"

Colloquium | October 4 | 4-6 p.m. | 180 Doe Library

 Xiaofeng Tang, Professor, Research Institute for Historical Geography, Peking University

 Michael Nylan, Professor, Department of History, UC Berkeley

 Center for Chinese Studies (CCS)

Using mainly materials from the Shang and Zhou eras, this talk will investigate the special characteristics of historical geography in early China. The lecture will discuss such concepts as the Central States (Zhongguo), the traces of Yu, the Nine Provinces, the Five Zones, all of which imply some level of advanced civilization. Then, too, the geographic area we associate with "Chinese traditional culture" has "special characteristics" that we can discern in in urban forms and layouts, in modes of garden landscaping, and in the study of place names. Due attention to these expressions of culture amply repays our attention.