Monday, November 5

Reading Assignment:  Introduction, The Qin Revolution, pp. 1-7

Our task on Monday will be to bridge the gap in time we confront as we move from the second unit of the course to the third -- leaping over the Classical era (771-221 BC) as we make our way from the fall of the Western Zhou to the Qin. With our survey of Western Zhou documentary sources, we have come as close to the ground of the actual "Past" that preceded the Classical age as we can. Now we will learn more about the "Future," as it occurred in time, rather than in the imagination of the utopian thinkers of the Hundred Schools.

Part of our task will be to review the shape of Classical China, bringing it back into focus after a few weeks away from it. In doing so we'll begin to focus exclusive on the state of Qin, which, as you know, dictated the destiny of the Chinese state. The initial pages of the reading on Qin that you have for today conform to the following outline, which will be the basis of our discussion

Pre-Conquest Qin
            Marginality
            Guest-Minister tradition (Shang Yang)
            Military profile
                    The 18 ranks
            "Legalist" structures -- curtailment of feudalism
                    non-hereditary feudalism (18 ranks)