Culture, Courtiers, and Competition
The Ming Court (1368-1644)
Edited by David M. Robinson
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Culture, Courtiers, and Competition by David M. Robinson
Book DescriptionThis collection of essays reveals the Ming court as an arena of competition and negotiation, where a large cast of actors pursued individual and corporate ends, personal agency shaped protocol and style, and diverse people, goods, and tastes converged. Rather than observing an immutable set of traditions, court culture underwent frequent reinterpretation and rearticulation, processes driven by immediate personal imperatives, mediated through social, political, and cultural interaction.The essays address several common themes. First, they rethink previous notions of imperial isolation, instead stressing the court's myriad ties both to local Beijing society and to the empire as a whole. Second, the court was far from monolithic or static. Palace women, monks, craftsmen, educators, moralists, warriors, eunuchs, foreign envoys, and others strove to advance their interests and forge advantageous relations with the emperor and one another. Finally, these case studies illustrate the importance of individual agency. The founder's legacy may have formed the warp of court practices and tastes, but the weft varied considerably. Reflecting the complexity of the court, the essays represent a variety of perspectives and disciplines - from intellectual, cultural, military, and political to art history and musicology.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780674028234
(235mm x 159mm x 36mm)
Imprint: Harvard University, Asia Center
Publisher: Harvard University, Asia Center
Publish Date: 1-Aug-2008
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author David M. Robinson
Martial Spectacles of the Ming Court, Hardback (December 2013)
David M. Robinson explores how grand displays like the royal hunt, archery contests, and the imperial menagerie were presented in literature and art in the early Ming dynasty. He argues these spectacles were highly contested sites where emperors and court ministers staked competing claims about rulership and the role of the military in the polity.
Empire's Twilight, Hardback (December 2009)
A study of the late Mongol empire in Northeast Asia during mid-fourteenth century. It focuses on the themes such as: the need for a regional perspective encompassing all states and ethnic groups in the area; the process and consequences of pan-Asian integration under the Mongols; and, the need to see Koryo Korea as part of the wider Mongol empire.
Emerson and the Conduct of Life, Paperback (February 2009)
Robinson discusses each of Emerson's major later works noting their increasing orientation to a philosophy of the 'conduct of life'.
Natural Life, Hardback (August 2004)» View all books by David M. Robinson
Deeply informed and wonderfully discerning guide to Thoreau's thought and writing, equally valuable for the light it sheds on Thoreau's individual works and for its grasp of the evolution of Thoreau's whole career as a continuous process of unfolding.
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Author Biography - David M. Robinson
David M. Robinson is Associate Professor of History and Asian Studies at Colgate University.
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