Chinese History 3-2-10 - State and Society in Traditional...

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State and Society in Traditional China The Central Government 1. Emperor (“Son of Heaven”)- received Mandate of Heaven to become ruler; not bound by the law to regulate power of ruler; different from medieval states in Europe and Japan, unlimited power and subject to no laws or charters; nobody has leverage to constrain power, but Chinese people believe that he is legitimate to rule the people because he had Mandate of Heaven; a. Constitution did not have power to control ruler- king has to respect law or charter; ruler has obligation to take care of well being of people; if not; people have right to rebel and take this as sign of loss of Mandate of Heaven b. Power of Taoist monk have no comparison to power of Vatican pope; cities that can have high degree of autonomy in OTHER countries; no independent cities from central gov’t, provincial capitals in China, has prefectural capitals; county magistrate 2. Chief counselor- or prime minister, changes name from dynasty to dynasty; only below emperor but above everyone else 3. Ministers (6 departments, ministries) a. Personnel b. Revenue c. Rites d. War e. Punishment f. Works 4. Censors/inspectors The Centralized Bureaucratic State Centralization Emperor Wu of the Han Creating “Inner Court” (eunuchs) to counterbalance the “Outer Court” (ministers)
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Chinese History 3-2-10 - State and Society in Traditional...

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