Empire of Great Brightness by Craig Clunas
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Empire of Great Brightness
By Craig Clunas

Empire of Great Brightness

Visual and Material Cultures of Ming China, 1368-1644

By (author) See other recent books by Craig Clunas
Format: Hardback

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Empire of Great Brightness by Craig Clunas

Book Description

"Empire of Great Brightness" is an innovative and accessible history of a high point in Chinese culture, seen through the riches of its images and objects. Not a simple emperor-by-emperor history, it instead introduces the reader to themes that provide stimulating and original points of entry to the culture of China: to ideas of motion and rest; to the position occupied by writing and objects featuring writing; to ideas about pleasure, about violence and about ageing. It challenges notions of Ming China as a culture closed off from the rest of the world by emphasizing the vibrant interactions between China and the rest of Asia at this period. Craig Clunas uses a wide range of pictures and objects from Ming China to illustrate familiar areas such as painting and ceramics (including the blue-and-white porcelain of the period, arguably the world's first global brand'). He draws on items from public and private collections from around the world, which will be new even to specialists, including weapons, architecture, textiles and items of dress, printed books (from Ming pornography to the world's first illustrated reading book for children). He also examines contemporary sources from government edicts to novels and phrasebooks of colloquial Chinese as well as the most recent scholarship to illuminate this most diverse period of Chinese art and culture. "Empire of Great Brightness" offers a varied and stimulating resource for all scholars of China's cultural history, for historians and art historians of related aspects of the early modern world, and for readers who are intrigued by China's past.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9781861893314
ISBN-10: 1861893310
Format: Hardback
(250mm x 190mm x 23mm)
Pages: 256
Imprint: Reaktion Books
Publisher: Reaktion Books
Publish Date: 20-Aug-2007
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Other Editions...


Books By Author Craig Clunas

Ming by Craig Clunas Ming, Paperback (September 2014)

By focusing on the significant years of the early Ming dynasty and through the themes of court people and their lives, developments in culture, the military, religion, diplomacy and trade, this book brings the wider history of this period to colourful life.

Empire of Great Brightness by Craig Clunas Empire of Great Brightness, Paperback (July 2009)

Presents history of a high point in Chinese culture, seen through the riches of its images and objects. This title introduces the reader to themes that provide original points of entry to the culture of China: to ideas of motion and rest and to the position occupied by writing and objects featuring writing.

Art in China by Craig Clunas Art in China, Paperback (February 2009)

A beautifully illustrated new edition of the ultimate single-volume guide to the history of art in China, from neolithic times to the 21st century

» View all books by Craig Clunas

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Author Biography - Craig Clunas

Craig Clunas is Professor of History of Art at the University of Oxford, and the author of Superfluous Things (1991), Fruitful Sites: Garden Culture in Ming Dynasty China (Reaktion, 1996), Pictures and Visuality in Early Modern China (Reaktion, 1997), Art in China (1997) and Elegant Debts: The Social Art of Wen Zhengming (Reaktion, 2004).

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Recent books by Craig Clunas close
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