Fei Xiaotong (费孝通) (2 November 1910 - 24 April 2005) was the prominent anthropologist and sociologist of China. He was one of the first sociologists and anthropologists who conducted anthropological studies of the life of Chinese society. He was a political journalist and a “cultural intermediary” who published articles about the West in Chinese in China, and about China in English in the West. Fei Xiaotong’s career was full of ups and downs that were associated with the political situation in the country. Finally, after 1978 and starting of the period of Economic Reform and Openness he could re-enter public and scientific life, and officially became a respected academic and a public intellectual which dedicated all his life to the investigation of Chinese society and social problems. For many people, Fei Xiaotong’s works became the first sources, from which it was possible to obtain various information about the Chinese village. His works made us think about the laws of social development and on what methods they should be studied. He believed that it was necessary not only to develop sociology but to go its way, to strive to develop Chinese sociology with all its specifics. Fei Xiaotong devoted his entire life to studying Chinese society and the changes taking place in it. The main stimulus that inspired him all his life was the hope that the Chinese peasants will live better and better, and with them, China will become stronger and more prosperous state.
The history of the first translation of the New Testament into the Korean language covers more than 10 years — from 1876 till 1887. The article follows the chronological principle of the translation process, deals with main characteristics of the process and makes its focus on the attribution of the authorship of the translation. The official author of the translation is considered to be John Ross — a Protestant missionary from the United Presbyterian Church of Scotland, but the question keeps to be open since the great part of the translation work was carried out by many Korean translations, whose names are still remain unknown. The article supplies at least a partial answer to it.
This paper examines the problematic concept of dead language as exemplified by the Hebrew language. The first section presents a brief history of the concept of dead language in European linguistic thought. Originating in Italy of the 15th century, the term became common in European linguistic writings during the 16th to 18th centuries as an epithet for Latin, Ancient Greek and Hebrew. During the Haskala (Jewish Enlightenment) in the 19th century it was adopted by Jewish intellectuals and was current in linguistic controversies throughout the 20th century. Sections 2 and 3 show the key role the label dead as applied to Hebrew played in wide-spread polemics on Jewish language choice in Russia during the first quarter of the 20th century (§ 2) and in the discourse about a Hebrew “revival” in Palestine at the same period (§ 3). Later works on the history of Hebrew published in the 19th and 20th centuries proposed novel conceptualizations but nevertheless followed the idea of the “deadness” of the Hebrew language of previous periods, discussed in § 4. Examples of Hebrew usage which contradict Hebrew’s functioning exclusively as a language of religion and high-level writings are provided in § 5. The last section is a humble attempt to outline a possible direction for a description of Hebrew language history, avoiding the problematic term dead language and other related terms.
The main source of the publication is a manuscript from the Royal Library in Copenhagen («Poёmata Sultani Kânszuh el-Gauri» Cod. Arab. 280). It contains materials haven’t been looked at in Russian historiography. Forty two poems by the penultimate mamluk sultan al-Ghuri are gathered in the manuscript. This is the very rare example of mamluk poetry writing. The research includes description of the manuscript, translation of some fragments and analyse of their content.
A rich illuminated copy of “Kitab al-Qanun al-Wadhih fi Mu‘alajat al-Jawarih” composed by ‘Ali Ibn Qushtum al-Baghdadi (13th c.) was written in 1510 and now belongs to the collection of Arabic manuscripts of St. Petersburg State University. The treatise was not published and the manuscript itself is not well known. “Kitab al-Qanun al-Wadhih fi Mu‘alajat al-Jawarih” is devoted to classification of birds of prey, their training and treatment. The manuscript opens with a page of full-illumination. The geometric basis for this decoration is a circle. The beautiful central figure consists of colored concentric circles surrounded by six rays. The equal design has the finispiece, decorated with four dashes radiating from the center-sun-shape. A decorated opening double-page carries the title of the work in the upper (Kitab) and lower (al-Qanun al-Wadih) panel in its right side. The name of the author, basmala and hamdala are inscribed in the centre-medallion. The main text executed in an elegant nash script. The treatise consists of two parts – theoretical and practical. The copy is a noteworthy sample of the illumination of Arabic manuscript on the eve of Ottoman conquest. “Kitab al-Qanun al-Wadhih fi Mu‘alajat al-Jawarih” is a the low-studied source on the history of the Arab medicine and Arab-Muslim culture.
The paper contains an attempt to actualize experience of the Soviet school of Libyan studies and its approach to research for the role of Islam in the social and political development of Libya after the revolution of 1969. The author’s hypothesis is based on the assertion that a certain section of Soviet orientalists did not agree with the skeptical attitude to the role of Islam in the process of political modernization and state building in Libya of that period as demanded by the dogmatic and theoretical principles of Marxism and Leninism. Suggesting a different view of the problem, they managed to prove the possibility of an alternative vision of the political development and genesis of Libyan society. The author examined and compared the texts of articles and monographs published during the heyday of the discussion about the role of Islam in the process of national liberation struggle and state building in Libya (1970-1980s). We tried to reconstruct the main stages and elements of the discussion and to identify its key theses. The obtained conclusions are of interest in view of their relevance and usefulness for studying a wide range of socio-political processes in Libya in the 20th and 21st centuries.
The rebellion against the Qing Empire initiated by a Gushi Khan’s grandson Lobsang Danjin in 1723– 1724 was an important event not only in the history of Koko Nor (Qinghai) but it also influenced the situation in Jungaria and Tibet. It would not be an exaggeration to regard the suppression of this rebellion by the Manchus as a pivotal event in the history of the eastern Inner Asia. The present article is mainly based on two modern editions of the collected documents in Chinese: “Nian geng yao zou zhe” (“The memorials of Nien Kêng-yao. Ch’ing documents at National Palace Museum”) and “Yong zheng chao han wen zhu pi zou zhe hui bian” (“The collection of the reports to emperor Yongzheng in Chinese with comments”), as well as “The annals of Kokonor” written in Tibetan by Sumpa-kenpo Yeshé- Paljor who witnessed these events. The futile rebellion by Lobsang Danjin was a response to the establishment by military force of the Qing rule in Lhasa in 1720. However, he was not supported by the Jungars and even by the majority of the Hoshot Mongols, his compatriots. In the course of the warfare many Tibetan lamas were massacred and their monasteries were destroyed. Thus the descendents of Gushi Khan had to abandon their claims for the kingship of Tibet, and the suppression of Lobsang Danjin’s rebellion marked the final shift of power over Tibet to the Qing emperors of China. The Yongzheng emperor ably used the conquest of Koko Nor to achieve a firm control over Tibetan population and Buddhist clergy. However, by rebuilding the destroyed monasteries and by executing the Chinese military commander Nian Gengyao he maintained his image of a defender of the Yellow Faith.
Increasing use of soft power has become a distinctive feature of Chinese foreign policy over the last decade. In the following article the author analyses reasons that stimulated Chinese government to apply this foreign policy concept in everyday political practice, and also gives a detailed description of soft power with Chinese characteristics. The author pays special attention to the instruments that China uses to reveal soft power potential of the country, especially public diplomacy. Obviously there are certain barriers that keep China from immediate success such as lack of informational resources and mistrust of Western society. The positive moment is that Chinese government and scientists realize all the problems and obstacles that China faces today and work on developing of relevant strategy that will help to reach political goals of the country.
This paper focuses on the analysis of the Millet system’s political role in the Ottoman Empire. The research on non-Muslim subject’s history is an important link in the chain of the Ottoman Empire history. The millets had a cultural, social and political function, as well as obvious spiritual role. It may be defined as a political organization within the Ottoman administration, accepting sultan’s absolute power, granted to the non-Muslims a right of self-management in their community affairs. However, there was a frequent state intrusion into the millets’ affairs. The head or millet bashi was elected by the millet but had to receive the confirmation of the Sultans. So, it became easy for the state to intervene in the elections of the more important millets. The Millet system could have been a proper and good solution of non-Muslims’ problems in the Ottoman Empire, but it didn’t work very well. İt became a very important instrument of the foreign powers to gain the advantages from the Sublime Porte.
The article examines series of novels written by the one of the most popular Chinese women writer of XX century - Eileen Chang. The author analyzes social and cultural changes taking place in the later period of Chinese Republic. Through the detailed analysis of Chang’s novels it can be seen that practically in all her works the main protagonist is a modern woman living in the big city and trying to play a new role in the family and society. The stories of numerous female characters help us to reveal main social conflicts and contradictions of Chinese society of 1940-s. Sophisticated female characters show that in many ways Chinese woman was unable to adjust to rapid social change. While during the study period many city woman acquired the new right to education and work, obtained a new legal status, their minds still continued to be subordinated to the old Confucian ideology.
The rNying-ma-pa School (lit. “The Old School”, also styled “Red Hat School”) traces its origins to the days of the Tibetan Empire, thus, it has existed throughout the whole recorded Tibetan history. However, in the second millennium AD its clerics did not play a significant role in the political development in Tibet. 122 However, its lamas enjoyed much respect of the Tibetans since they were regarded as the custodians of Tibetan traditions as well as of profound Buddhist knowledge and magic practices. The turbulent events that happened in and around Tibet during the 17th and early 18th centuries significantly affected the position of the rNying-ma-pa. The Mongol interference into Tibetan affaires resulted in the domination of the Gelugpa. The Fifth Dalai Lama demonstrated equal respect towards both the Gelugpa and rNying-ma-pa Schools. Among his teachers were prominent rNying-ma-pa lamas and later he himself wrote many works on rNying-ma-pa practices. Also, he encouraged building rNying-ma-pa monasteries which became major centres of that school. He regarded the rNying-ma-pa as a Tibetan national Buddhist school which was linked to the local Tibetan deities and protective rituals, and for those reasons he opposed its propagation outside Tibet among the Mongols and the Manchus. The prosperity of the rNying-ma-pa ended abruptly with the Dzungar invasion of Tibet in 1717. During three years of occupation all rNying-ma-pa monasteries including the most ancient Tibetan monastery bSam-yas were destroyed, many of its hierarchs and ordinary lamas were killed. Among the reasons behind such repressive actions were accusations of sorcery rites aimed at the Dzungars which were performed by the rNying-ma-pa lamas at the request of Lhabzang Khang, the last Khoshot ruler of Tibet. The intervention of the Qing empire led to the expulsion of the Dzungars from Tibet and the end of the rNying-ma-pas’ persecution. However, in 1726 the Yongzheng emperor issued a decree which limited the activities of the rNying-ma-pa inside Tibet in favour of the Gelugpa School. It seems that this decree was incited by the rivalry of the top Beijing lamas as well the need to overcome the consequences of the cruel suppression of the rebellion in Qinghai in 1723–24 accompanied by the destruction of many holy places of the Gelugpas. This imperial decree did not have much effect because after the outbreak of the civil war in Tibet in 1727 Pholhanas who openly demonstrated his respect towards the rNying-ma-pa School became a winner and subsequently the ruler of Tibet.
Changchun as a modern city grew during the construction of the Chinese Eastern Railway and South Manchurian Railway. The article discusses the interaction and interpenetration of different cultures on the example of the architectural development of the city of Changchun from the late 19th to the first half of the 20th century. This period encompasses two key stages of urban development: the initial period and the period of the South Manchurian Railway. The article gives examples of the most typical samples of the architectural style of the period. The study of the development of architecture in Changchun City and its comparison with other major cities (Shenyang and Harbin) of Northeast China of that time shows that in the process of development Changchun city has changed its architectural style. This occurred under the influence of traditional Chinese, Russian, and later — Japanese architecture.
This paper presents the results of researching Viet-Muong folk stories and religious practices of Bavi area (Northern Vietnam) which is a very peculiar, sacred space within Viet-Muong cultural tradition. The research is based on information from Vietnamese written sources, works published by French and Vietnamese scholars, as well as on the author’s field data collected in Bavi in 2015. All the materials are conceptualized within the context of hierotopy, interdisciplinary scientific field focusing on the study of sacred spaces. The author argues that the sacred space of Bavi is linked with the cult of mountains which was widespread among the Viet-Muong peoples and identifies two groups of folk stories and religious rituals associated with this space. The final part of the paper reveals how the space of Bavi incorporates sacral phenomena of contemporary Vietnam, including the memorial temple of Ho Chi Minh.