Liangzhu Culture: Society, Belief, and Art in Neolithic China

1st Edition

Bin Liu, Ling Qin

Routledge
November 19, 2019 Forthcoming
Reference - 244 Pages - 163 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781138557406 - CAT# Y380731

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Summary

The Liangzhu Culture (5,300-4,300 BP) represented the peak of prehistoric cultural and social development in the Yangtze Delta. With a wide sphere of influence centred near present day Hangzhou City, Liangzhu City is considered one of the earliest urban centres in prehistoric China. Although it remains a mystery for many in the West, Liangzhu is well known in China for its fine jade-crafting industry; its enormous, well-structured earthen compound and recently discovered hydraulic system; and its far-flung impact on contemporary and succeeding cultures. The archaeological ruins of Liangzhu City was successfully enlisted for the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage in July 2019.

Liangzhu Culture contextualises Liangzhu in broad socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds and provides new, first-hand data to help explain the development and structure of this early urban centre. Among its many insights, the volume reveals how elites used jade as a means of acquiring social power, and how Liangzhu and its centre stand in comparison to other prehistoric urban centres in the world.

This book, the first of its kind published in the English language, will be a useful guide to students at all levels interested in the material culture and social structures of prehistoric China and beyond.

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