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The Art of Being GovernedEveryday Politics in Late Imperial China$
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Michael Szonyi

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691197241

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691197241.001.0001

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A Soldier Curses a Clerk

A Soldier Curses a Clerk

Regulatory Arbitrage Strategies in the Military Colonies

(p.131) Chapter Five A Soldier Curses a Clerk
The Art of Being Governed

Michael Szonyi

Princeton University Press

This chapter discusses military colonies that supported military garrisons. In these colonies, groups of military households worked the land to feed their colleagues in the garrisons. The tragic story of the Yan family of Linyang illustrates how soldiers of the colony became highly adept at turning the differences between their land and ordinary land to their own benefit. Commercialization of the economy generated complex patterns of landownership and usage, and households in the colonies tried to draw on these patterns for their own purposes. But everyday politics in the colonies involved more than manipulating the land regime. Just like their counterparts in the guard, households stationed there also had to integrate with the communities around them.

Keywords:   military colonies, military garrisons, Yan family, Linyang, soldiers, colonies, commercialization, landownership, land regime

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