Culture Shock! China - A Survival Guide to Customs and Etiquette, 2nd Edition

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148 CultureShock! China

remnants of the past still exist that we get to experience both
its past and its future simultaneously.
It provides an opportunity to witness visible change in
real time. The evolution is only partially complete. While the
Communist push to modernise China dramatically marks
cities like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, a half day of
travel, by any means of transportation, will put you hundreds
of years back in time to slow villages with dirt-floored houses,
chickens striding confidently around compounds, and old
women sitting quietly by the front door doing handiwork
and ready for a chat.
With its vast size, multiple ethnic groups and long history,
China is an onion that takes a lifetime to peel. In this chapter, the
authors will highlight the main influences of philosophy, religion
and political movements to give the reader enough context to
begin to understand the perspective and influences that shape
modern culture in China. The only real way to understand China
is to experience her land and people yourself.

Chinese Dynasties Period

Xia Dynasty 21st–16th century BC

Shang Dynasty 16th–11th century BC

Zhou Dynasty
—Spring and Autumn Period
—Warring States Period

11th century BC–771 BC
770 BC–476 BC
476 BC–221 BC

Qin Dynasty 221 BC–206 BC

Han Dynasty
—Western Han
—Eastern Han

206 BC–AD 24

AD 25–220

Three Kingdoms Period 220–280

Jin Dynasty
—Western Jin
—Eastern Jin



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