The Rise of “Inner Asia” Lecture Notes
The Han Dynasty
China expanded west, and was more successful than the Qin Dynasty.
The Qin fell after the sudden death of the emperor, due to the forced labor, heavy taxes,
and Legalist policies.
Book burning and the execution of critics were not uncommon during the Qin, many
texts were forever destroyed, but some survived and exist to this day.
Liu Bang aka Emperor Gaozu of Han was a peasant who founded the Han at Changan.
Gaozu reversed the policy of fiefdom with varying degrees of success. He had officials
being constantly moved from their territory in order to prevent by loyalties.
Emperor Wu of Han was a Legalist, but greatly advanced Confucianism by establishing a
state – sponsored school of Confucian thought.
Emperor Wu went to great lengths to vanquish the threat of the Xiongnu (based in Altaic
A common item during the Han were Wiks, or early forms of chairs/furniture.
The mark of foreigners was a hat.
As the Han moved outwards, they greatly desired horses.
Yuezhi culture moved westward into India.
The Silk Road
Silk tapestry was favored by the elite classes from India to China to Rome.
Mulberry leaves were a sign of good governance if the leader planted these seeds (future
generations would profit).
Silkworm larvae produce