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Dong Zhongshu’s Writings

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Chapter Summary

This chapter commences with a list of writings that is given in Dong Zhongshu's biography in the Han shu. Then, it pays attention to the historical and literary circumstances in which some of these writings should be placed. Three responses are perhaps to be interpreted as Dong Zhongshu's protest against some of the prevailing conditions that were colouring public life during the reign of Wendi and perhaps more certainly that of Jingdi. By contrast with the three responses and memorials, readers of this fu are expected to recognise allusions to such works and the Zhou yi or Xici zhuan without prompting, and to need no explanation of historical or mythical figures such as Boyi or Shuqi. It may be noted that Dong Zhongshu traced the imbalance of wealth in the first instance to Shang Yang's abolition of the jing tian system and permission to sell land.

Keywords: Dong Zhongshu; imbalance of wealth; jing tian system; Jingdi; Shang Yang; Wendi



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