Higher Education

A Brief History of Chinese and Japanese Civilizations, 4th Edition

  • Conrad Schirokauer City University of New York
  • Miranda Brown University of Michigan
  • David Lurie Columbia University
  • Suzanne Gay Oberlin College
  • ISBN-10: 0495913227  |  ISBN-13: 9780495913221
  • 736 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2006
  • © 2013 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $123.50
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This compelling text explores the development of China and Japan through their art, religion, literature, and thought as well as through their economic, political, and social history. The author team combines strong research with extensive classroom teaching experience to offer a clear, consistent, and highly readable text that is accessible to students with no previous knowledge of the history of East Asia.

Features and Benefits

  • The text has been thoroughly updated to reflect current scholarship and recent history. These updates include: a new discussion of disease and demography in Heian Japan; military archaeology; additional emphasis on the diversity and vitality of artistic-literati life as well as women's history; expanded coverage on relations with the outside world; new material on Facism as a path toward modernity in both Japan and China; expanded coverage of Japan's Great Recession; and much more.
  • The four-color design features many illustrations, including maps, timelines, and other photos, and provides concise, yet complete coverage.

Table of Contents

1. "China" in Antiquity.
2. Turbulent Times and Classical Thought.
3. The Early Imperial Period.
4. China during the Period of Disunity.
5. The Cosmopolitan Civilization of the Sui and Tang: 584-907.
6. Early Japan to 794.
7. Heian Japan.
8. China during the Song: 960–1279.
9. The Mongol Empire and the Yuan Dynasty.
10. The Ming Dynasty: 1368–1644.
11. The Kamakura Period in Japan.
12. Muromachi Japan.
13. East Asia and Modern Europe: First Encounters.
14. Tokugawa: Background, Establishment, and Middle Years.
15. The Qing Dynasty.
Part V: China and Japan in the Modern World.
16. China: The Troubled Nineteenth Century.
17. Japan: Endings and Beginnings: From Tokugawa to Meiji, 1787–1873.
18. The Emergence of Modern Japan: 1874–1894.
19. China: Endings and Beginnings, 1894–1927.
20. Imperial Japan: 1895–1931.
21. The 1930s and World War II.
22. The Aftermath of the War and Unfinished Business.
23. China under Mao.
24. The Chinese World since Mao.
25. The New Japan.

What's New

  • Each major Chinese dynasty, Japanese Shogunate, or other discrete period is covered in a separate, brief chapter. Encounters with the West are also explored.

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Conrad Schirokauer

Conrad Schirokauer currently serves as Senior Scholar and Adjunct Professor at Columbia University as well as Professor Emeritus at the City University of New York. In addition to A BRIEF HISTORY OF CHINESE AND JAPANESE CIVILIZATIONS (and its separate volumes on China and Japan), he has published articles on Song intellectual history and served as co-editor (with Robert Hymes) of ORDERING THE WORLD: APPROACHES TO STATE AND SOCIETY IN SUNG DYNASTY CHINA and as translator of CHINA'S EXAMINATION HELL, by Miyazaki Ichisada.

Miranda Brown

Miranda Brown received her B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from the Department of History, University of California, Berkeley. She is Associate Professor of Asian Languages & Cultures in the Department of Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Her research and publications span the fields of early Chinese cultural and social history and the history of medicine.

David Lurie

David Lurie received a B.A. in Literature from Harvard University and a M.A. and Ph.D. in Japanese Literature from Columbia University. He teaches Japanese history and literature in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at Columbia University. His research concerns the history of writing systems in Japan, and more broadly, in pre-modern East Asia. David Lurie also works on the cultural and intellectual history of Japan through the Heian period. He is currently completing a manuscript entitled "Realms of Literacy: Early Japan and the History of Writing" and is also working on a project analyzing the interconnections among biography, historiography, education, and the production and circulation of texts in Nara and Heian period Japan.

Suzanne Gay

Suzanne Gay is Professor of East Asian Studies at Oberlin College. Her research interests include the social and economic history of medieval Japan, with a particular emphasis on the role of commoners in history. Her monography, THE MONEYLENDERS OF LATE MEDIEVAL KYOTO, was published by University of Hawaii Press in 2001. She is currently working on the history of two merchant families of medieval Kyoto, and her next project will focus on commerce and pilgrimage in the Oyamazaki area southwest of Kyoto.