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The Art of Being Governed – Everyday Politics in Late Imperial China - Princeton Scholarship Online
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The Art of Being Governed: Everyday Politics in Late Imperial China

Michael Szonyi


How did ordinary people in the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) deal with the demands of the state? This book explores the myriad ways that families fulfilled their obligations to provide a soldier to the army. The complex strategies they developed to manage their responsibilities suggest a new interpretation of an important period in China's history as well as a broader theory of politics. The book examines how soldiers and their families living on China's southeast coast minimized the costs and maximized the benefits of meeting government demands for manpower. Families that had to provide a soldier ... More

Keywords: Ming dynasty, China, manpower, Chinese soldiers, defiance, compliance, Ming China

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2019 Print ISBN-13: 9780691197241
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2020 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691197241.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Michael Szonyi, author
Harvard University