"How Can We Talk about the Ritual of Yin?" Warring States Perceptions of Shang Civilization in the Light of the Tsinghua Manuscripts

Collaborative Group

Dr. Uffe Bergeton


Asian Studies


This workshop centers on the Tsinghua manuscripts some of which seem to make claims about the Shang from the perspective of the Warring States. This reading-workshop adopts the somewhat unusual approach of initiating a dialogue between the period when the sources were written down and one of the moments to which they refer, between the Warring States and the Shang. We do not assume that there is a connection between the two. Instead, we simply ask the following questions: Is there any basis in reality in Warring States imaginations of the past? How should the standard approaches to the study of the Shang (paleography, archaeology, and others) be used for testing hypotheses generated by the new sources? What (if any) is the relevance of these new sources for the study of the Shang?