More than 1,000 entries explore all aspects of China's past, present and future, with essay-length entries on provinces and major cities; Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism and other religions; family life; calligraphy, embroidery, sculpture and other arts and crafts; folktales and mythology; martial arts, including tai chi chuan and kung fu; native animals and plants; emperors and dynasties; political movements and institutions; traditional medicine; contemporary leaders; festivals and holidays; foreign relations; language and writing; educational systems; Chinese communities around the world; and much more. Photographs and illustrations depict Chinese art and architecture, everyday life, cities, and political figures.
This Encyclopedia is a new reference that reflects the vibrant, diverse and evolving culture of modern Japan, spanning from the end of the Japanese Imperialist period in 1945 to the present day. Entries cover areas such as literature, film, architecture, food, health, political economy, religion and technology.
Explore a range of diverse and fascinating cultural subjects from prisons to rock groups, underground Christian churches to TV talk shows and radio hotlines. Experimental artists with names such as 'Big-Tailed Elephants' and 'The North-Pole Group' nestle between the covers alongside entries on lotteries, gay cinema, political jokes, sex shops, theme parks, 'New Authoritarians' and 'Little Emperors'. While the focus of the Encyclopedia of Contemporary Chinese Cultureis on mainland China since 1980, it also includes longer, specially commissioned entries on various aspects of contemporary culture in Hong Kong and Taiwan.
The crucial period of Chinese history, 220-960, falls naturally into contrasting phases. The first phase, also known as that of "early medieval China," is an age of political decentralization. Following the breakup of the Han empire, China was plunged into civil war and fragmentation and stayed divided for nearly four centuries. The second phase started in 589, during the Sui dynasty, when China was once again brought under a single government. Under the Sui, the bureaucracy was revitalized, the military strengthened, and the taxation system reformed. The fall of the Sui in 618 gave way to the even stronger Tang dynasty, which represents an apogee of traditional Chinese civilization. Inheriting all the great institutions developed under the Sui, the Tang made great achievements in poetry, painting, music, and architecture. The An Lushan rebellion, which also took place during Tang rule, brought about far-reaching changes in the socioeconomic, political, and military arenas. What transpired in the second half of the Tang and the ensuing Five Dynasties provided the foundation for the next age of late imperial China.
The Chinese Communist Party, as the political leader of the world's largest country and second largest economy, plays an undeniably important role in global politics. Founded in a boarding school in Shanghai in 1921, the Chinese Communist Party is one of the oldest ruling parties in the world since its takeover of mainland China in 1949 under the leadership of Chairman Mao Zedong. Since its inception, the party has survived a civil war with the Kuomintang (1946-1949); the political, cultural, and humanitarian catastrophe of the Great Leap Forward (1958-1960), where upwards of 30 million Chinese civilians died; and the death of the Chinese Communist Party's dominant leader, Mao Zedong, in 1976.
The Cultural Revolution in the People's Republic of China started in 1966 and lasted about a decade. This revolutionary upsurge of Chinese students and workers, led by Mao Zedong, wreaked havoc in the world's most populous country, often turning things upside down and undermining the party, government, and army while simultaneously weakening the economy, society, and culture. Tens of millions of people were killed, injured, or imprisoned during this period and relatively few benefited, aside from Mao Zedong and the Gang of Four, the group that would eventually receive the blame for the events of the Cultural Revolution.
Although China's intelligence activities may not have been well documented, they can be traced back to the ancient writings of Sun Tzu, and espionage has been a characteristic of Chinese domestic politics and international relations ever since.
The Historical Dictionary of Japan to 1945 spans the entire period from the earliest evidence of human habitation in Japan through to the end of the Pacific War. It includes substantial topics such as cultural and literary history, with entries ranging from aesthetics to various genres of writing.
Mongolia borders Russia to the north and the People's Republic of China to the south, east, and west. The Mongol Empire was founded by Genghis Khan in the 13th century. It eventually submitted to the Manchu rulers of Qing China in the 17th century. After the Soviet-backed revolution of 1921 it became a one-party state known from 1924 as the Mongolian People's Republic. Following the democratic revolution of 1990, which ushered in multiparty politics and a market economy, the new constitution adopted in 1992 renamed the country Mongolia.
Asia is one of the most rapidly developing regions in the world, and knowledge of the individual countries is crucial for our understanding of the area. The Republic of the Philippines, composed of a chain of islands in Southeast Asia, became a Spanish colony during the 16th century and was then ceded to the United States following the Spanish-American War. After independence in the 20th century, the Filipino people suffered under the 20-year rule of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos, which ended as a result of a "people power" movement in 1986. Since then, the history of the Philippines has been marked by several more political coups, but a growing economy and democratic elections are increasing stability in the country.
The book traces Turkey's moments of glory and those of decline, starting with the rise of the Ottoman Empire in the 13th century and concluding with the present day. It presents many significant persons, places, and events as well as important aspects of the economy, culture, and society. A chronology and appendices clarify this long history as well as provides an overall picture of the present.
The Greek name Mesopotamia means "land between the rivers." The Romans used this term for an area that they controlled only briefly (between 115 and 117 A.D.): the land between the Euphrates and Tigris rivers, from the south Anatolian mountains ranges to the Persian Gulf. It comprises the civilizations of Sumer and Akkad (third millennium B.C.) as well as the later Babylonian and Assyrian empires of the second and first millennium. Although the "history" of Mesopotamia in the strict sense of the term only begins with the inscriptions of Sumerian rulers around the 27th century B.C., the foundations for Mesopotamian civilization, especially the beginnings of irrigation and the emergence of large permanent settlements, were laid much earlier, in the fifth and fourth millennium.
The A to Z of Malaysia encapsulates the development of Malaysia from prehistory to the early years of the 21st century. It covers not only Malaysia's history but also its politics, economy, multiethnic society, multiculturalism, scientific and technological developments, and the state of its environment.
The new edition of the Historical Dictionary of Singapore relates the history of this country through a chronology, an introductory essay, an expansive bibliography, and over 500 cross-referenced dictionary entries on significant persons, events, places, organizations, and other aspects of Singapore history from the earliest times to the present.
From ancient times to the present, the history of Cyprus is provided in this reference, which includes hundreds of cross-referenced dictionary entries on its historical, political, social, cultural, and economic history.
The second edition of the Historical Dictionary of Brunei Darussalam contains a chronology, an introductory essay, a bibliography, and hundreds of cross-referenced dictionary entries on important persons, places, events, and institutions, as well as significant political, economic, social, and cultural aspects.
Dwelling in the highland areas of Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Thailand, Burma (Myanmar) and southwest China are hundreds of ethnic groups known as 'tribes' in popular literature. Some groups number barely more than one hundred, others millions. Together their population adds up to 80 million, more than any of the countries (bar China) they inhabit, yet in each they are designated and treated as "minorities."
Burma (Myanmar) is a country in crisis, and a political resolution to its problems of national unity seems unlikely to occur in the near future. The purpose of the Historical Dictionary of Burma (Myanmar) is to explain in depth the country's political crisis, while also providing detailed historical background.
Hundreds of cross-referenced A to Z dictionary entries are included on political, economic, social and cultural aspects as well as the major cities and geographic features. This book also contains a chronology and introduction that traces Vietnam's history, as well as a bibliography.
Vietnam became part of French Indochina in 1887 and did not regain its independence again until after the Vietnam War. However, despite a relatively peaceful two decades the country experienced little economic growth because of conservative leadership policies. In an effort to change this stagnation, Vietnamese authorities have committed to economic liberalization and enacted structural reforms needed to modernize the economy and to produce more competitive, export-driven industries. The third edition of this dictionary focuses on the recent changes and leadership of Vietnam while giving due attention to the earlier kingdoms, the period of French Indochina, the wars for liberation, the Vietnam War, and much more.