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By: Yinong Xu
361 pages, Bw photos, illus, maps
The city of Suzhou was a leading force in the development of an urban China for nearly a millennia. The one-time capital of the state of Wu, Suzhou lay at the heart of a region vital to the economic and cultural growth of the Chinese empire from as early as the ninth century. In this masterful study of the formation and transformation of Chinese urban form and space, Suzhou is presented as both the object of and witness to a complex history. Drawing on a wealth of primary materials detailing the city's history, customs, and urban construction as well as on recent work in Chinese history, culture, and religion, Yinong Xu examines characteristics of building and transformation in pre-modern Suzhou, characteristics that, while particular to the city's own historical development, reflect or were determined by factors representative of China's urban history in general. Richly detailed, impeccably researched, judiciously argued, and generously illustrated, The Chinese City in Space and Time will engage scholars in a wide range of disciplines, including urban history, Chinese history, comparative historical studies, popular religion and mythology, and architectural history.
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