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Luxurious networks : salt merchants, status, and statecraft in eighteenth-century China

Author: Yulian Wu, (Historian)
Publisher: Stanford, California : Stanford University Press, [2017] ©2017
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
From precious jade articles to monumental stone arches, Huizhou salt merchants in Jiangnan lived surrounded by objects in eighteenth-century China. How and why did these businessmen devote themselves to these items? What can we learn about eighteenth-century China by examining the relationship between merchants and objects? Luxurious Networks examines Huizhou salt merchants in the material world of High Qing China  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Wu, Yulian (Historian).
Luxurious networks.
Stanford, California : Stanford University Press, 2016
(DLC) 2016020969
Named Person: Qing Gaozong, China Kaiser
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Yulian Wu, (Historian)
ISBN: 9780804798112 0804798117
OCLC Number: 967846034
Description: xvii, 295 pages : illustrations, facsimiles, 1 genealogical table, maps ; 24 cm
Contents: Introduction : merchant culture in the material world of eighteenth-century China --
Courting the court --
Furnishing the court --
Collecting as a "collector" --
Luxury and lineage --
Materializing morality --
Conclusion : cultured and cosmopolitan men (tongren) : objects, merchants, and the Manchu court in High Qing China.
Other Titles: Salt merchants, status, and statecraft in eighteenth-century China
Responsibility: Yulian Wu.

Abstract:

From precious jade articles to monumental stone arches, Huizhou salt merchants in Jiangnan lived surrounded by objects in eighteenth-century China. How and why did these businessmen devote themselves to these items? What can we learn about eighteenth-century China by examining the relationship between merchants and objects? Luxurious Networks examines Huizhou salt merchants in the material world of High Qing China to reveal a dynamic interaction between people and objects. The Qianlong emperor purposely used objects to expand his influence in economic and cultural fields. Thanks to their broad networks, outstanding managerial skills, and abundant financial resources, these salt merchants were ideal agents for selecting and producing objects for imperial use. In contrast to the typical caricature of merchants as mimics of the literati, these wealthy businessmen became respected individuals who played a crucial role in the political, economic, social, and cultural world of eighteenth-century China. Their life experiences illustrate the dynamic relationship between the Manchu and Han, central and local, and humans and objects in Chinese history.

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"Luxurious Networks is a paragon of interdisciplinary scholarship, filled with insights into the political and material cultures of eighteenth-century China. Challenging conventional views of Read more...

 
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