• The Great Wall Of China

The Great Wall Of China

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It is commonly and mistakenly believed that there is a single Great Wall of China. Rather, it is made up of many small walls built over the course of time. The first defensive wall in China dates from around 688 BC, but the Great Walls that we know today were mainly completed in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). Man has used it in ways that range from a potent defensive measure to an iconic piece of cultural heritage to a major tourist attraction. The Great Wall of China brings together some fascinating insights into the study of the Walls. Diverse methods are employed to illustrate the social and political history of the Wall from ancient times up to the present day. Scholarly, but accessible essays are interspersed with contemporary interviews which reveal the local experience of this Chinese institution. The book is divided into 6 major themes: Fame, Form, Forces, Foundations, Frontiers and Facades and comprises 13 essays by authors from Australia, China and the US. Accompanying an exhibition held in the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney and the National Museum of China, Beijing, they consider the Wall from historical, defensive, conservationist and touristic perspectives. This is an innovative and informative discussion of the Great Walls of China which deserves to stand as a classic for all those interested in this illustrious construction.

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