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Tang and Song Dynasties Reunification and Renaissance in Chinese Civilization.

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Presentation on theme: "Tang and Song Dynasties Reunification and Renaissance in Chinese Civilization."— Presentation transcript:

1 Tang and Song Dynasties Reunification and Renaissance in Chinese Civilization

2 SUI ERA – 6 TH CENTURY CE Marked return to strong dynastic control in China Wendi seized son-in-law’s throne –Supported by neighboring nomadic commanders –Reunited core areas of China after three and a half centuries –Won widespread support

3 Yangdi seized the throne by murdering his father –extended father’s conquests –Pushed back northern invaders –legal and educational reforms –weakness for luxury –unpopular wars –Assassinated by his own ministers in 618

4 TANG DYNASTY Importance of Li Yuan: Founded Golden Age Expanded Chinese territory: larger than Han Rebuilt the bureaucracy –Revived the scholar-gentry –Confucian exams –Ideological basis for centralized government

5 Religion in Tang and Song Empires Tang Dynasty and Buddhism –Buddhism had royal patronage and widespread conversion –Emperors began limiting the flow of land and resources to monasteries –Buddhists were persecuted Focus on Confucianism threatened old aristocratic families and Buddhism

6 Decline of the Tang Empress Wei tried to establish a second dynasty –Overthrown by a palace revolt led by another prince Emperor Xuanzong ( ) marked the peak of Tang dynasty –Initially supported political and economic reforms –His later actions increased economic distress, discontent, and military weakness –Rebellion against the Tang failed, but weakened the dynasty Tang made alliances with northern nomads

7 Many provincial governors became independent rulers 9 th century – Succession of revolts led by peasants 907 – Last Tang emperor was forced to resign

8 Founding of the Song Dynasty 960 – Strong military commander emerged to reunite China under a single dynasty –Emperor Taizu founded the Song, which lasted for three centuries Never matches the Tang Dynasty in political or military strength –In part, this was because the Song changed Chinese systems to ensure that they wouldn’t fall like the Tang had

9 Promoted interests of scholar-gentry –Civil service exams were fully routinized –Bureaucracy soon had too many well-paid officials with little to do Revival of Confucian ideas and values (Neo- Confucianism) –Reinforced class, age, and gender distinctions –Hostility towards Buddhism –Stifled critical thinking and innovation

10 Song Decline Nomadic groups carved out kingdoms on the northern border Peasant taxation increased Armies were large but commanders weren’t the best possible leaders 1070s and 1080s – Introduced sweeping reforms in an effort to keep the empire from collapsing Neo-Confucianists came to power and reversed the previous policies

11 Northern nomads began taking more Song land –Songs had to flee to the south Empire survived for another century and a half

12 Contributions of the Tang and Song Construction –Canal building (Grand Canal) Helped transport goods and collect taxes 1200 miles long, 40 paces wide, with tree lined highways on each side

13 Commercial Expansion –Conquests and canals promoted commercial expansion –Tang control in Asia helped reopen and protect the Silk Roads between China and Persia Increased international contacts China imported luxury products and exported manufactured goods –Chinese merchants began taking goods to others instead of waiting for the goods to come to them Chinese junks

14 –There were market quarters in every city –Increase in forms of credit available –Use of paper money –Surge in urban growth

15 Expanding agrarian production –People moved south to fertile river valleys –Supported by rulers of both dynasties –State created irrigation and embankment systems –New seeds and methods increased production Aristocratic lands were divided up amongst free farmers

16 Family and Society during the Tang and Song Era Position of women initially improved –Tang women could exercise considerable power at the highest levels of Chinese society Patriarchal society encouraged by Confucius remained Elaborate system of arranged marriages –Divorce was allowed by mutual consent Position of women declined under the Song (neo-Confucians)

17 Foot binding

18 Inventions and the Arts New tools, production techniques, and weapons spread to other civilizations and fundamentally changed the course of human development Inventions –Banks and paper money –Dams, dikes, and bridges –Explosive powder and weapons –Compasses –Abacus –Printing with moveable type

19 Arts –Scholar-gentry was responsible for most artistic and literary creativity –Confucian and Buddhist art and poetry were important –Tang – Short stories and poems –Song – Landscape paintings


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