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Ch 6: Early Civilization in China

About This Chapter

Watch video lessons and learn about the different dynasties and emperors of ancient China, including the importance of Confucianism and the Silk Roads. The quizzes that follow each lesson can help you gauge your comprehension of the materials.

Early Civilization in China - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives

Discover what life was like for lower and upper classes in ancient China. Meet some key ancient Chinese emperors, including those belonging to the Shang, Zhou, Qin and Han dynasties. Explore the life, thoughts and world of Confucius, and become familiar with his code of conduct. Travel along the 5,000-mile Silk Road that ran between ancient China and the Roman Empire, and experience some of its trade obstacles and rewards. When you've finished watching the videos and taking the self-assessment quizzes, you should be familiar with

  • Founders and noteworthy members of ancient Chinese dynasties
  • Major achievements and unique characteristics of ancient Chinese dynasties
  • The levels and structure of ancient Chinese society
  • Ethics and relationships associated with Confucianism
  • Cultural and trade importance of the Silk Roads

VideoObjective
Early Chinese Civilization in the Huang-He River Valley Learn about how Chinese civilizations originated during the Shang Dynasty.
How Geography Isolated Ancient China Examine the geographic features of China and how they encouraged the cultural and economic isolation of ancient China.
Confucius: Biography & Teachings Study the life of Confucius.
The Founding of Confucianism: Overview & Influence Discuss the influence of Confucius and his philosophy on ancient China, especially his thoughts on Chinese society.
The Teachings of Confucianism & Taoism Understand the fundamentals of Confucianism and Taoism.
Political & Cultural Issues in Confucius' Time Address how Confucius tried to approach the problems in politics and culture that were rampant during his lifetime.
Unification of Northern China under Shi Huangdi of the Qin Dynasty Determine the significance of Shi Huangdi's reign.
Political Contributions of the Han Dynasty Describe the reigns of Emperors Liu Bang, Wu Ti and other members of the Han Dynasty, including Wu Ti's military victory over the Xiongnu, educational and trade achievements and use of paper.
The Silk Roads During the Han Dynasty & The Roman EmpireExplain how the Silk Roads facilitated trade between China and the Roman Empire, including challenges and opportunities.
9 Lessons in Chapter 6: Early Civilization in China
Early Chinese Civilization in the Huang-He River Valley

1. Early Chinese Civilization in the Huang-He River Valley

Although Chinese civilization developed along rivers much like cultures in Mesopotamia and Egypt, the idea of royal power took a completely different direction. Learn how the Mandate of Heaven ruled all in Ancient China.

How Geography Isolated Ancient China

2. How Geography Isolated Ancient China

Unlike many other ancient cultures, China was effectively isolated from many other early civilizations. Geography played a huge role in this isolation - this lesson will help you learn how.

Confucius: Biography & Teachings

3. Confucius: Biography & Teachings

The teachings of Confucius have been among the most enduring in history, acting as a guide for literally billions of people. This lesson explains his early life and the inspiration that started it all.

The Founding of Confucianism: Overview & Influence

4. The Founding of Confucianism: Overview & Influence

This lesson will explain the origins of Confucianism by highlighting the life and times of Master Kung, known today as Confucius. In doing so, it will focus on feudalism in China as well as the principle of jen.

The Teachings of Confucianism & Taoism

5. The Teachings of Confucianism & Taoism

Confucianism and Taoism were the guiding philosophies for many Chinese people for hundreds of years. But, how can two philosophies both work when they are often reaching different conclusions? This lesson explains how.

Political & Cultural Issues in Confucius' Time

6. Political & Cultural Issues in Confucius' Time

Despite the best efforts of the Zhou, China soon had too many unemployed people for its own good and society became chaotic. Learn how Confucius helped pull China out of 400 years of strife in this lesson.

Unification of Northern China under Shi Huangdi of the Qin Dynasty

7. Unification of Northern China under Shi Huangdi of the Qin Dynasty

After several hundred years of strife and chaos, one man from the Qin state was able to unify China. This lesson details the life of Shi Huang Di, as well as the downfall of his Qin dynasty.

Political Contributions of the Han Dynasty

8. Political Contributions of the Han Dynasty

The Han Dynasty's impact on Chinese history is almost impossible to understate. This lesson provides details as to the organization of the Han, as well as how they were able to grow increasingly powerful.

The Silk Roads During the Han Dynasty & The Roman Empire

9. The Silk Roads During the Han Dynasty & The Roman Empire

The Silk Roads connected some of the most diverse cultures in history, as well as providing a link between the superpowers of 2,000 years ago. Learn more about the route that connected the Han Dynasty and Imperial Rome.

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