Search Results

Restricted Access

Yuri Pines

The Book of Lord Shang, commonly identified as a major work of the so-called Legalist school, is also an important, albeit much neglected treatise in the history of Chinese military thought. Beyond specific recommendations concerning both defensive and offensive warfare, the book presents a coherent view that the state should restructure its socioeconomic and cultural policies in order to turn every man into a valiant soldier. The book epitomizes the ideology of “total war” in which the differences between civilian and military affairs are blurred. The society is profoundly militarized and the army, in turn, is profoundly bureaucratized.

This article explores military thought in the Book of Lord Shang and focuses on its views of mobilization, indoctrination of soldiers, military discipline, rules of military engagement, and military command. I further deal with the question of why the book’s military ideology has been all but neglected after the end of the Han dynasty.

Restricted Access

Yuri Pines

Xinian is a recently published bamboo manuscript from the collection of Qinghua (Tsinghua) University. It is the lengthiest, most detailed historical text unearthed in recent decades. The text narrates major events from the history of the state of Chu, its rivals, and its allies from the beginning of the Western Zhou period to the early fourth century bce. In this introductory article I argue the following: first, both the language and the content of Xinian indicate that this text was based on earlier historical sources from the states of Chu and Jin, in addition to sources from within the Zhou royal domain; second, the authors’ utilization of their primary sources differs markedly from those observable in Zuo zhuan (with which Xinian has many overlapping parts) and in later collections of anecdotes; and third, Xinian may represent a heretofore unknown genre of “informative history.” In addition, I explore the new perspectives that Xinian sheds on early Qin and Chu history.


Le Xinian est un manuscrit sur bambou récemment publié, appartenant à la collection de l’Université Qinghua (Tsinghua). Il s’agit du texte historique le plus long et le plus détaillé exhumé au cours des dernières décennies, relatant les événements importants de l’histoire de l’État de Chu, de ses rivaux et de ses alliés depuis le début des Zhou Occidentaux jusqu’au début du ive siècle avant notre ère. Cet article introductif propose les conclusions suivantes: d’abord, la langue comme le contenu du Xinian indiquent que le texte est basé sur des sources historiques plus anciennes provenant des États de Chu et de Jin, auxquelles s’ajoutent des sources du domaine royal des Zhou ; ensuite, l’usage que font ses auteurs de leurs sources diffère notablement de ce qui peut être observé dans le Zuo zhuan (avec lequel le Xinian se recoupe en de nombreux endroits) et dans les collections d’anecdotes postérieures ; enfin, le Xinian pourrait être représentatif d’un genre jusqu’ici inconnu d’“histoire informative”. L’article explore par ailleurs certaines perspectives nouvelles suggérées par le texte sur l’histoire du début du Qin et celle du Chu.


Restricted Access

Introduction

Ideology and Power in Early China

Series:

Yuri Pines

Restricted Access

Series:

Edited by Yuri Pines, Paul Goldin and Martin Kern

Ideology of Power and Power of Ideology in Early China explores ancient Chinese political thought during the centuries surrounding the formation of the empire in 221 BCE. The individual chapters examine the ideology and practices of legitimation, views of rulership, conceptualizations of ruler-minister relations, economic thought, and the bureaucratic administration of commoners.
The contributors analyze the formation of power relations from various angles, ranging from artistic expression to religious ideas, political rhetoric, and administrative action. They demonstrate the interrelatedness of historiography and political ideology and show how the same text served both to strengthen the ruler’s authority and moderate his excesses. Together, the chapters highlight the immense complexity of ancient Chinese political thought, and the deep tensions running within it.
Contributors include Scott Cook, Joachim Gentz, Paul R. Goldin, Romain Graziani, Martin Kern, Liu Zehua, Luo Xinhui, Yuri Pines, Roel Sterckx, and Charles Sanft.
Restricted Access

Series:

Yuri Pines, Paul R. Goldin and Martin Kern

Restricted Access

Series:

Yuri Pines, Paul R. Goldin and Martin Kern