The constitution of ancient China / Su Li ; edited by Zhang Yongle & Daniel A. Bell ; translated by Edmund Ryden.
By: Su, Li.
Contributor(s): Zhang, Yongle | Bell, Daniel (Daniel A.) | Ryden, Edmund.Material type: BookCall no.: KNN2090 .S82 2018Series: Princeton-China series: Publication: Princeton, N.J. : Princeton University Press, c2018Description: vii, 292 p. : map.Notes: Translated from the Chinese ; chiefly English with some Chinese.ISBN: 9780691171593 (hardcover); 0691171599 (hardcover).Subject(s): Constitutional history -- China | Culture and law -- China | China -- Politics and government -- History | China -- History
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Translated from the Chinese ; chiefly English with some Chinese.
Includes bibliographical references (pages 269-281) and index.
Introduction / Su Li -- The constitution of the territory and politics of a large state / Su Li -- Ancient china's cultural constitutionality / Su Li -- Scholar-officials / Su Li -- The mixed Han-Tang-Song structure and its moral ideal : a reply to Professor Su Li's account of the Chinese constitution / Wang Hui -- The symbolic and the functional : Su Li on the constitution of ancient China / Liu Han -- The ideal of civilization and formation of institutions in Ancient China : a reply to Su Li / Wu Fei -- History, culture, revolution, and Chinese constitutionalism / Zhao Xiaoli -- Response to my critics / Su Li -- Glossary of key terms.
How was the vast ancient Chinese empire brought together and effectively ruled? What are the historical origins of the resilience of contemporary China's political system? In The Constitution of Ancient China, Su Li, China's most influential legal theorist, examines the ways in which a series of fundamental institutions, rather than a supreme legal code upholding the laws of the land, evolved and coalesced into an effective constitution. Arguing that a constitution is an institutional response to a set of issues particular to a specific society, Su Li demonstrates how China unified a vast territory, diverse cultures, and elites from different backgrounds into a whole. He delves into such areas as uniform weights and measurements, the standardization of Chinese characters, and the building of the Great Wall. The book includes commentaries by four leading Chinese scholars in law, philosophy, and intellectual history--Wang Hui, Liu Han, Wu Fei, and Zhao Xiaoli-who share Su Li's ambition to explain the resilience of ancient China's political system but who contend that he overstates functionalist dimensions while downplaying the symbolic. Exploring why China has endured as one political entity for over two thousand years, The Constitution of Ancient China will be essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the institutional legacy of the Chinese empire.
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