CHAPTER_3_China_outline - CHINA I. A. China and India India...

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CHINA I. China and India A. India and West Indo-European language group; contacts from Darius to Alexander the Great to Mother Teresa B. Isolation of China Gobi desert, mountains of Tibet, and Central Asia enclose a vast area (only 12% arable) cultural separation: have always regarded themselves as The Civilization, contempt for outsiders [“I’ll stop calling them Orientals when they stop calling themselves the Central Kingdom”] Only 12 of land is arable Small kingdoms not “united” until 3 rd century b.c Common culture develops in isolation Agriculture (and after that, civilization) began in China around 7000 b.c., in the Yellow and Yangtze river valleys Chinese ceramics at least 5000 years old II. Shang Dynasty (1500 - 1000 bc) A. Neolithic, bronze age origins B. Religion Oracle Bones way of predicting future, prophecy — flat bone; inscribe symbols; put into fire; can predict future from the way the bone cracks. Probably the first writing in China. Priest-kings Human sacrifice most ancient cultures, pre-Hebrew [remember Abram] kill people to accompany dead rulers ancestor worship recall Amistad situation: African prays to his ancestors because “at this moment, I am their only reason for having lived” not gods, but people who have gone on and can give help, advice if asked
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C. Writing oracles -- writing probably developed from oracle bones, cracks and symbols logographic that is, each symbol carries an IDEA, not a sound results: can READ language even if one can’t SPEAK it (idea not tied to the way
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CHAPTER_3_China_outline - CHINA I. A. China and India India...

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