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A History Of Chu (Volume 3)

A History Of Chu (Volume 3)

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Author: Zhang Zhengming
ISBN: 9781623201395
Pub Date: June 2021

Content Highlights:

The fruit of late historian and accomplished Chu expert Zhang Zhengming’s long and dedicated research, A History of Chu reveals the intriguing history of a powerful feudal state in the Zhou dynasty. Chu, once deemed southern “barbarians,” gradually rose to prominence on the shores of the Yangtze as the Zhou court weakened. With King Zhuang recognized as hegemonial lord towards the late Spring and Autumn period, the Chu subdued many Central Plain states and eventually survived into the Warring States period as a major power. From its emergence to the realization of its ambitious conquests and regional hegemony, the Chu state, with its vast territory, boasted a culture that was distinctly different from the Central Plain states. 

Zhang Zhengming spent years studying and gathering both historical records and archaeological finds, carefully compiling his findings into a Chu-centric narrative that previous studies of traditional Chinese history have lacked. A History of Chu documents the entirety of the Chu’s remarkable and dramatic existence. 

Volume 3 finishes with an account of the gradual decline of the once powerful Chu. Although the short-lived reforms in administration and the military initiated by the famous military strategist Wu Qi returned the Chu to a position of power during the Warring States period, the Chu’s prominence started to fall into obscurity under the rule of King Huai and the Chu was eventually subjugated by the increasingly dominant Qin. The Chu family was later revived as an insurgent force against the Qin’s imperial rule and was defeated by the Han after the collapse of the Qin dynasty.

Zhang Zhengming(1928–2006) was a pioneer of Chu studies and prominent researcher of ethnicminority history. A graduate of Tsinghua University, he started his career ingovernment ethnic minority committees in the 1950s. In 1979, his firstmonograph A History of the Khitans wonhim wide recognition in the field of minority historical studies, and in 1981,he facilitated the founding of the Chu Research Institute at the Hubei Academyof Social Sciences. He was Professor at the School of History and Culture ofCentral China Normal University and held vice presidency positions at theChinese Association for Nationality History and the Chinese Association ofQuyuan. His other notable works include A History of Chu Culture (1981), A Chronicle of Chu Culture (1988), A History of Ethnic Communitiesalong the Yangtze Valley (2006),and Qin and Chu (2007).


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