Zhou, Qin, And Han Dynasties

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The Zhou, Qin, and Han dynasties dominated many centuries of Classical China, during which new philosophies and political systems emerged. Chinese history is usually divided into different dynasties, each one being as varied as the other. Each dynasty would begin when the previous one collapsed due to a weak economic, political, or social system. While one dynasty fell apart due to a weak central government, (the Zhou dynasty), another met its end when intelligence was repressed and taxes were sky high, (the Qin dynasty). It was perhaps the Han dynasty, (which lasted over 400 years), that enforced and maintained peace and prosperity most successfully. As varied as the dynasties are, it is best to examine each one separately to determine the exact relationship between them. The Zhou Dynasty was more successful in some areas than others. It managed to expand the territory of China by taking over the Yangtze River valley, which eventually became China’s core. But the expansion of land weakened China’s ‘central government’, and made it vulnerable against any disloyal citizens. Because of this, the Zhou began to promote the idea of cultural and linguistic unity. Although a single language was established and cultural creativity flourished throughout, the dynasty was not united enough to prevent the development of independent armies and was eventually overthrown. The Zhou dynasty was followed by the Qin dynasty, which managed to significantly strengthen the weakened government and establish a new form of protection against intruders. The power of the central government increased tremendously when a national census was ordered, giving the government more information concerning tax revenue. Many projects were coordinated during the Qin dynasty as well, including the construction of the Great Wall of China, one of the greatest constructional
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