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Craft Production and Social Change in Northern China

Overview

The development of complex societies is a central subject in archaeological research. Using archaeological evidence from the Yellow (Huanghe) River valley in Northern China, this volume examines changes in the culture that occurred during the late Neolithic Period of China and speculates that this development connects to the emergence of civilized societies in this area.
Several developments in the culture of the Huanghe Valley that suggest ...

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Paperback (Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 2002)
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Overview

The development of complex societies is a central subject in archaeological research. Using archaeological evidence from the Yellow (Huanghe) River valley in Northern China, this volume examines changes in the culture that occurred during the late Neolithic Period of China and speculates that this development connects to the emergence of civilized societies in this area.
Several developments in the culture of the Huanghe Valley that suggest their contribution to the development of complex societies include:

-Craft specialization;
-Use of prestige goods such as jade, pottery, and bronze;
-Display of status through both feasting and mortuary rituals.

This work emphasizes the many different approaches that attempt to theorize the development of complex socieites, as well as outlines the approaches and methods used in this research. It will be of interest to archaeologists, cultural and historic anthropologists, ancien Asian historians and Asian preservationists.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Underhill's monograph is the first diachronic archaeological study of this region from the anthropological perspective. This work will be of interest to students in Chinese archaeology,m as well as to archaeologists studying the rise of social complexity in other parts of the world."
(Journal of Anthrolopological Research, 59 (2003)

"...in this book, Anne Underhill has undertaken a massive investigation of the textual and archaeological evidence for changes in craft production in relation to the development of complex society between 4000 and 1200 B.C. in northern China. Probably the most meticulously systematic argument in the Chinese archaeological literature, where a rich array of Chinese historical and archaeological as well as worldwide ethnographical data are marshaled in its support."
(Gina L. Barnes, Asian Perspectives, 43:1)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781461351726
  • Publisher: Springer US
  • Publication date: 12/31/2012
  • Series: Fundamental Issues in Archaeology Series
  • Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 2002
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 346
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Table of Contents

1. The Research Problem: Craft Production and the Development of Complex Societies in Ancient China. 2. Sources of Data on the Development of Complex Societies in the Yellow River Valley. 3. Food, Craft Specialization, and Social Inequality: Cross-Cultural Perspectives. 4. The Gift of Food in Ancient China: The Role of Food, Drink, and Containers in Social Relations. 5. The Dawenkou and Yangshao Period. 6. The Longshan Period. 7. The Early Bronze Age. 8. Craft Production and Social Change in Northern China. Index.

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