Walter Scheidel's Rome and China: Comparative Perspectives on Ancient World PDF

By Walter Scheidel

Transcending ethnic, linguistic, and non secular obstacles, early empires formed hundreds of thousands of years of global historical past. but regardless of the worldwide prominence of empire, person instances are usually studied in isolation. This sequence seeks to alter the phrases of the controversy via selling cross-cultural, comparative, and transdisciplinary views on imperial country formation sooner than the eu colonial expansion.

Two thousand years in the past, as much as one-half of the human species used to be contained inside of political platforms, the Roman empire in western Eurasia (centered at the Mediterranean Sea) and the Han empire in japanese Eurasia (centered at the nice North China Plain). either empires have been commonly related when it comes to dimension and inhabitants, or even mostly coextensive in chronological phrases (221 BCE to 220 CE for the Qin/Han empire, c. 2 hundred BCE to 395 CE for the unified Roman empire). on the most elementary point of answer, the conditions in their production will not be very diverse. within the East, the Shang and Western Zhou sessions created a shared cultural framework for the Warring States, with the slow consolidation of various small polities right into a handful of huge kingdoms that have been eventually united by means of the westernmost marcher country of Qin. within the Mediterranean, we will be able to notice related political fragmentation and sluggish enlargement of a unifying civilization, Greek for this reason, via the sluggish formation of a handful of significant warring states (the Hellenistic kingdoms within the east, Rome-Italy, Syracuse and Carthage within the west), and in addition eventual unification by means of the westernmost marcher country, the Roman-led Italian confederation. next destabilization happened back in strikingly comparable methods: either empires got here to be divided into halves, person who contained the unique center yet used to be extra uncovered to the most barbarian outer edge (the west within the Roman case, the north in China), and a traditionalist part within the east (Rome) and south (China).

These tactics of preliminary convergence and next divergence in Eurasian nation formation have by no means been the item of systematic comparative research. This quantity, which brings jointly specialists within the historical past of the traditional Mediterranean and early China, makes a primary step during this course, by way of proposing a sequence of comparative case reviews on sincerely outlined features of nation formation in early japanese and western Eurasia, concentrating on the method of preliminary developmental convergence. It encompasses a common creation that makes the case for a comparative strategy; a vast caricature of the nature of country formation in western and jap Eurasia in the course of the ultimate millennium of antiquity; and 6 thematically hooked up case experiences of rather salient facets of this process.

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Rome and China: Comparative Perspectives on Ancient World Empires (Oxford Studies in Early Empires) by Walter Scheidel


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