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Ancient Greece and China

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b33eazy View Drop Down
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    Posted: 08 Dec 2010 at 18:18
What are the similarities and differences of ancient China and Greece? I could only think about the difference like how Greece had the Polis and was several City-States, essentially Greece was composed of several countries. China, on the other hand, was unified under Qin. That's the only difference I could think of.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Flipper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Dec 2010 at 19:33
Originally posted by b33eazy b33eazy wrote:

What are the similarities and differences of ancient China and Greece? I could only think about the difference like how Greece had the Polis and was several City-States, essentially Greece was composed of several countries. China, on the other hand, was unified under Qin. That's the only difference I could think of.


Hello and welcome to the forum!

I'm not a specialist on Chinese history to name detailed similarities... One could quickly name the importance of writing in both societies, the technocracy and philosophy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Dec 2010 at 22:57
Originally posted by b33eazy b33eazy wrote:

What are the similarities and differences of ancient China and Greece? I could only think about the difference like how Greece had the Polis and was several City-States, essentially Greece was composed of several countries. China, on the other hand, was unified under Qin. That's the only difference I could think of.


You better compare ancient Greece with other small collections of city states, like the Middle Ages Italy, the Ancient Mayas and others. China is more similar to the development of larger Empires in the west, like Rome.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Dec 2010 at 23:30
Obviously, the notion that "China" popped onto the horizon "jus' grown" as if some historical Topsy may please Sinophiles, but such is little more than a bad case of sinusitis! After al the Qin dynasty consisted of but one man and covered a period of just 12 years! After all, everything even smacking of politics prior to the 2nd century BC hangs entirely on the Shiji, where various entities and peoples are identified as "governments" and "dynasts" given names such as Zhou, Shang and Xia, when in fact from the 8th through the 3rd centuries BC the situation was not only more volatile but is normally characterized as the Warring States Period.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Seko- Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Dec 2010 at 23:41
Unity is a rare entity in history. The Chinese were not immune. Division is the rule rather than the norm. I feel this thread is more cumbersome than what it's worth and hence don't feel like taking the time to explain to our newest member the divisions and turmoil that Chinese dynasties had to endure while they were intact let alone the turmoil that battles among independents brought to the table while they were not. As a head start, here is a link on Chinese empires and an intro to their dynasties by clicking on the accompanying wiki links.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynasties_in_Chinese_history

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Flipper Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Dec 2010 at 12:03
Originally posted by Seko Seko wrote:

Unity is a rare entity in history. The Chinese were not immune. Division is the rule rather than the norm. I feel this thread is more cumbersome than what it's worth and hence don't feel like taking the time to explain to our newest member the divisions and turmoil that Chinese dynasties had to endure while they were intact let alone the turmoil that battles among independents brought to the table while they were not. As a head start, here is a link on Chinese empires and an intro to their dynasties by clicking on the accompanying wiki links.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynasties_in_Chinese_history



+ there's a difference between unity and "unity". True unity is when all the members of an ethnic division agree to be united (like in modern states). There is a also forceful unity, when one community of the ethnic group decides to control all others by force. In both China and Greece, whenever you had "unity" (almost in-existent in Greece), it was partial because only a part of the states agreed and appointed a leader without force. Reasons for this is mainly political... In early China a King prevailed over others and became Emperor. In Greece, the idea of abandoning democracy for Kingship or Oligarchy was forbidden for the Athenians. Also, local representation must have been important. By today means it would be no problem, but back then you could not have a kind of parliament where representatives of Athens, Sparta etc would be present. Therefore, geographical difficulties would make the creation of a state similar to the modern ones impossible.


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