The Water Kingdom

The Water Kingdom

A Secret History of China

Book - 2017
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From the Yangtze to the Yellow River, China is traversed by great waterways, which have defined its politics and ways of life for centuries...In The Water Kingdom, Ball takes us on a grand journey through China's past and present, showing how the complexity and energy of the country and its history repeatedly come back to the challenges, opportunities, and inspiration provided by the waterways. Drawing on stories from travelers and explorers, poets and painters, bureaucrats and activists, all of whom have been influenced by an environment shaped and permeated by water, Ball explores how the ubiquitous relationship of the Chinese people to water has made it an enduring metaphor for philosophical thought and artistic expression. From the Han emperors to Mao, the ability to manage the waters -- to provide irrigation and defend against floods -- was a barometer of political legitimacy, often resulting in engineering works on a gigantic scale. It is a struggle that continues today, as the strain of economic growth on water resources may be the greatest threat to China's future.
Publisher: Chicago : The University of Chicago Press, 2017
ISBN: 9780226369204
022636920X
Characteristics: 341 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
Call Number: 951 BAL

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