The Chinese University of Hong Kong Department of History Department of History
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The Local Economy and Governance of the Han Dynasty as Seen from the Newly Unearthed Documents of Changsha

Principal Investigator

LAI Ming Chiu

Total Fund Awarded


Funding Source

CUHK-SJTU Joint Research Collaboration Fund

Abstract of Project

This project aims at a thorough understanding of the local economy and the governance on the Changsha Commandery 長沙郡 during the Han period (206 BC – 220 AD). Through a micro-historical approach, our team shall explore the newly unearthed documents, excavated in Changsha, Hunan Province, which record the enforcement of Han laws and concrete economic activities during the Eastern Han times. We shall explore the economic development in the south China and the administrative mechanism of the Changsha Commandery.

This project will focus on:
i) The analysis of the economic development and administration system in the Changsha Commandery;
ii) The evaluation of the administrative bureaus performed governance in reference to the Han laws and imperial decrees;
iii) The explanation on the rationale that recognized co-existence of the regional variations under a unified empire;
iv) The exploration on the interactions between the early maritime Silk Road and inner-land commercial network.

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