World Civ 1 Honors
World Civ 1 Honors HIST 1110
University of Memphis
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Date Created: 02/05/16
Ancient India and Ancient China Foundations of Harappan Society ● The Indus River ■ Silt-enriched water from mountain ranges ● Major society built by Dravidian peoples, 3000-2500 BCE ■ Cultivation of cotton before 5000 BCE, early domestication of poultry ■ Decline after 1900 BCE ● Major cities: Harappa (Punjab region) and Mohenjo-Daro (mouth of Indus River) ■ 70 smaller sites excavated Mohenjo-Daro Ruins ● Population c. 40,000 ● Regional center ■ Layout, architecture suggests public functions ■ Broad, paved streets, citadel, pool, sewage system ● Standardized weights evident throughout region ● Specialized labor ● Trade Harappan Society and Culture ● Evidence of social stratification ■ Dwelling size, decoration ● Harappan civilization: matriarchal? ■ Influence on later Indian culture ● Goddesses of fertility: dancing girl figurine Mysterious End of Harappan Civilization ● Reasons for disappearance unclear ■ Excessive deforestation, loss of topsoil ■ Earthquakes ■ Flooding ● Evidence of unburied dead ● Disappearance by 1500 BCE TheAryan “Invasion” ● Aryans, lighter-skinned Indo-European invaders from the north ● Dravidians, darker-skinned sedentary inhabitants of Harappa ● Color bias ● Socio-economic implications ● Difficulty of theory: no evidence of large-scale military conquest The EarlyAryans ● Pastoral economy: sheep, goats, horses, cattle ■ Vegetarianism not widespread until many centuries later (along with sacred status of cow) ● Religious and literary works: the Vedas ■ Sanskrit: sacred tongue ■ Prakrit: everyday language, evolved into Hindi, Urdu, Bengali ■ Four Vedas, most important the Rig Veda ● 1,028 hymns (mantras) to gods/goddesses The VedicAge ● Co■flicts between Aryans and indigenous dasas (“enemies,” “subjects”) Aryans fighting Dravidians ■ Also, Aryans fighting each other ● Chiefdoms: Rajas (“king”; L. Rex, “king”) ● Early concentration in Punjab, migrations further south ■ Development of iron metallurgy ■ Increasing reliance on agriculture ● Tribal connections evolve into political structures Varna: The Caste System ● Origins in Aryan domination of Dravidians ■ Brahmin, Priest ■ Kshatriya, Warrior ■ Vaishya, Peasant, artisan, merchant ■ Shudra, Landless peasant, servant ■ Harijan: “Untouchables” (those who handle ritually impure objects, i.e. to do with human body or dead animals) ● Jati, sub-system of castes ■ Related to urbanization, increasing social and economic complexity Patriarchy in Ancient Indian Society ● “Rule of the father” enforced by the Lawbook of Manu ● Overwhelmed Harappan matriarchy? ● Caste, jati, inheritance through male line Aryan Religion ● Major deity of Rig Veda: Indra, war god, king of the gods ● Elaborate ritual sacrifices to gods ■ Role of Brahmins key ● C. 800 BCE, some movement away from sacrificial cults ■ Mystical thought, influenced by Dravidians Teachings of the Upanishads ● Texts that represent blending of Aryan and Dravidian traditions ● Composed 800-400 BCE, some later collections down to 13th century CE ● Brahman: the Universal Soul ● Samsara: Cycle of birth/death (realm of earthly existence) and basis of reincarnation ● Karma: Misdeeds accounting for successive incarnations (lives) ● Moksha: mystical ecstasy; end of samsara and union with Brahman ● Moral relationship to system of Varna China: The Yellow River ● 3,000 miles: Tibet to the Yellow Sea ● Deposits fertile, light colored soil (loess, from glaciation) ● Violent periodic flooding: “China’s sorrow” Prehistoric Society: Yangshao ● 5000-3000 BCE ● Banpo Village ● Painted pottery ● Bronze tools The Earliest Dynasties ● Xia ■ C. 2200 BCE ■ Organized through village network ■ Hereditary monarchy ■ Flood control works ● Shang ■ 1766-1122 BCE ● Zhou ■ 1122-256 BCE Shang Dynasty ● Bronze metallurgy from 1200 BCE ■ State monopoly of ore deposits ● Horse-drawn chariots, other wheeled vehicles ● Large armies ● Political organization: network of fortified cities loyal to the center ■ 1000 cities ■ Capital moved six times ● Impressive architecture at Ao, Yin Shang Dynasty Burial Practices ● Hierarchical social structure ● Live burials alongside deceased member of ruling class ■ Sacrificial victims, mostly slaves ■ Wives, servants, friends, hunting companions ■ Later replaced by statuary (terracotta army, Qin Dynasty) Zhou Dynasty, 1122-256 BCE ● No law codes: rule by decree ■ “Mandate of Heaven” (“Tian”) ● Aggregation of villages opposed to Shang leadership ■ Leads to decentralization of authority ● Development of cheap iron weaponry ends Shang monopoly on Bronze ● Early money economy: cowrie shells Decline of the Zhou Dynasty ● Decentralized leadership style allows for building up of regional powers ■ Increasing local independence, refusal to pay Zhou taxes ● Iron metallurgy allows for widespread production of weaponry ● Northern invaders weaken Zhou dynasty, beginning in 8th c. BCE ● Internal dissention: the Period of the Warring States (403-221 BCE) Social Order in Ancient China ● Ruling classes have great advantage ■ Palatial compounds, luxurious lifestyle ■ Supported by agricultural surplus, taxes ■ Defended by monopoly on bronze weaponry ■ Hereditary privilege ● Support class made up of artisans, craftsmen ● Evidence of long-distance trade, merchant class ● Large class of semi-free peasants ● Slave class Family and Patriarchy ● Devotion to family, ancestor veneration ● Connection of spirit world to physical world ■ Ritual sacrifices ● Father the ritual head of family rites ● Earlier prominence of individual female leaders fades in later Shang, Zhou dynasties Oracle Bones and Early Chinese Writing ● Used for communicating with spirit world, determining future ■ Question written on animal bones, turtle shells ■ Then heated over fire, cracks interpreted as omens ● Early archeological evidence of Chinese writing ● Evolution of Chinese script ■ Pictograph to ideograph (no alphabet) Zhou Literature: “The Chinese Classics” ● Confucius (discussed later in Chapter 8) ● Book of Changes ■ Manual for divination ● Book of History ● Book of Etiquette (Book of Rites) ● Book of Songs ● Little of it has survived ■ Often written on perishable bamboo strips ■ Many destroyed by Emperor of Qin dynasty in 221 BCE Nomadic Peoples of Central Asia ● Steppe nomads ■ Poor lands for cultivation, extensive herding activities ■ Horses domesticated c. 4000 BCE, bronze metallurgy in 2900 BCE ● Extensive trade with sedentary cultures in China ● Tensions: frequent raiding Southern Expansion of Chinese Society ● Yangzi Valley ■ Yangzi River: Chang Jiang, “long river” ■ Excellent for rice cultivation ■ Irrigation system developed: rice terraces ● The State of Chu ■ Autonomous, challenged Zhou dynasty ■ Culture heavily influenced by Chinese ■ Incorporated by Qin dynasty
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