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By Li Liu, Xingcan Chen

This e-book explores the jobs of agricultural improvement and advancing social complexity within the procedures of nation formation in China. Over a interval of approximately 10,000 years, it follows evolutionary trajectories of society from the final Paleolithic hunting-gathering teams, via Neolithic farming villages, and directly to the Bronze Age Shang dynasty within the latter 1/2 the second one millennium BC. Li Liu and Xingcan Chen exhibit that sociopolitical evolution used to be multicentric and formed by means of inter-polity factionalism and pageant, in addition to by means of the various fabric applied sciences brought from different components of the area. The booklet illustrates how historical chinese language societies have been reworked in this interval from basic to advanced, tribal to city, and preliterate to literate.

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Extra info for The Archaeology of China: From the Late Paleolithic to the Early Bronze Age

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Three major archaeological journals – the so-called Three Great Journals, including Kaogu Xuebao (Acta Archaeologica Sinica), which resumed its previously interrupted publication under a new name, as well as Kaogu (Archaeology) and Wenwu (Cultural Relics) – were established in Beijing. Paleolithic Archaeology Paleolithic archaeology was carried out by the Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Excavations at Zhoukoudian were resumed after the 1950s.

There has been a tendency to identify archaeological cultures, phases, sites, and even artifacts directly with specific ancient groups of people or places named in legendary or historical literature. The continuous debates on textual identification of several Bronze Age cities – such as Erlitou, Erligang, the Yanshi 17 18 The Archaeology of China Shang city near Yanshi, and Xiaoshuangqiao near Zhengzhou – best exemplify this attempt (see Chapter 8). By doing so, archaeological assemblages (mainly defined by pottery types) become historically meaningful, although the logical connections between the two sets of information – ceramic typology and ethnic affiliation – have not been made explicit.

The Peking Man site at Zhoukoudian has continued to play an important role in the reconstruction of early Chinese history. Lewis Binford and Chuan Kun Ho challenged the long-established conclusions that Peking Man controlled fire and that the Zhoukoudian cave was the home of Peking Man (Binford and Ho 1985). Many Chinese archaeologists were outraged, and Jia Lanpo, one of the excavators of Zhoukoudian, defended the original understanding of Peking Man’s unique status with great passion ( Jia, L.

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