How to remember Koxinga: Contested legacy

EARLIER this month China’s first aircraft-carrier set out from the port city of Dalian to begin her longest sea trial to date, one that is likely to include J-15 fighters performing take-off and landing...

Lin Zexu and the destruction of opium

Lin Zexu (30 August 1785 – 22 November 1850), was a Chinese scholar-official of the Qing dynasty best known for his role in the First Opium War of 1839–42. Lin became Governor-General of Hunan and...

Li Shizhen and his Compendium

Li Shizhen (李時珍, July 3, 1518  – 1593),  was a Han Chinese polymath, medical doctor, scientist, pharmacologist, herbalist and acupuncturist of the Ming dynasty. His major contribution to clinical medicine was his 27-year work,...

The technical encyclopedia of the Tiangong Kaiwu

The Tiangong Kaiwu (天工開物), or The Exploitation of the Works of Nature was a Chinese encyclopedia compiled by Song Yingxing. It was published in May 1637 with funding provided by Song's patron Tu Shaokui. The...

Han Feizi and the legalist school

The grouping together of thinkers that would eventually be dubbed "Fa-Jia" or "Legalists" can be traced to Han Fei (280–236 BC).  On rare occasion Han Fei lauds such qualities as benevolence and proper social...

Legalism in Chinese History

Qin unification of 221 BCE could have become the triumph of Legalism. The rise of the state of Qin started with Shang Yang; and it was by following his “agriculture cum warfare” course of...

Li Si: one of the most important figures in Chinese history

Li Si (Chinese: 李斯; c. 280 BC – September or October 208 BC) was a Chinese politician of the Qin dynasty. He served as the Chancellor (or Prime Minister) of the Qin dynasty from 246–208...

Why Are Hundreds of Harvard Students Studying Ancient Chinese Philosophy?

The professor who teaches Classical Chinese Ethical and Political Theory claims, "This course will change your life." Picture a world where human relationships are challenging, narcissism and self-centeredness are on the rise, and there is disagreement...

Bao Zheng

Bao Zheng (包拯; 11 April 999 – 20 May 1062), commonly known as Bao Gong (包公, "Lord Bao"), was a government officer during the reign of Emperor Renzong in China's Song Dynasty. During his...
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Xuanzang’s pilgrimage

The Buddhist monk Xuanzang (玄奘, 602–664 ) became famous for his seventeen-year overland journey to India, which is recorded in detail in the classic Chinese text Great Tang Records on the Western Regions, which in...
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