[HISTORY 250] - Midterm Exam Guide - Everything you need to know! (43 pages long)

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HISTORY 250
MIDTERM EXAM
STUDY GUIDE
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HISTORY 250 Lecture 1 Introduction
What is Chinese History?
Chinese History can be divided into two main eras
o 1 million (or 3 million) to 2000 BCE
This era is called prehistory because there are no written records
o 2000 BCE to present
This era is what we commonly call “history” because there are
written records documenting the time
Ancestors of the Chinese people
In 1 million BCE homo erectus (Peking Man or ape man) emerges
o Only 40 fossils of the Peking Man were found
o He had a larger brain than his ancestors and stood upright on two legs
o He is credited as being one of the first organisms to discover fire
This was used as a military weapon
o The average lifespan of the Peking Man was 14 years, but some lived up
to 60 years
o They lived in large caves
o They used stone tools which is the source of the term “Stone Age”
Detailed breakdown of historical periods
The Neolithic Period is divided into three main eras:
o Old Stone Age (3 million BCE 25,000 BCE)
o Middle Stone Age (25,000 BCE 10,000 BCE)
During this period the Agricultural Revolution occurred
This involved the domestication of plants and animals
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o The first domesticated animal was the dog (around
10,000 BCE) and other animals were domesticated
after
Less time collecting food meant more time to think abstractly and
create art
o New Stone Age (10,000 BCE 2000 BCE)
The emergence of pottery was one of the most important
developments during this time
Emergence of bronze (3000 BCE)
Classical Age (2000 BCE 200 BCE)
o Many of the main Chinese ideologies (Confucianism, Legalism, Daoism,
Mohism) were developed during this time
o The Five Classics (Book of Rice, Book of Change, Book of History, Book
of Poetry, and Book of Music) were written during the Classical Age
Almost all of these texts were lost during the Qin and Han
dynasties
o 221 BCE first centralized bureaucracy under the Qin Dynasty
February 1912 last emperor
o Following last emperor there have been two republics
Republic of China (1912-1950)
People’s Republic of China (1950-present)
Main themes of the class
Origin and development of culture
Who are the Chinese?
Trial, error, and change
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