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Traditional Yi-Xia View and the Forming of China's Territory--Serial Studies on China's Territory Formation

Li Dalong  
The treatise discusses the role played by the traditional Yi-Xia view in the forming of China's territory. It argues that the forming of China's territory, if judged by the contribution made by the Han people and the minorities of the borderland regions, can be generally divided into the following two periods, namely the period before the Tang Dynasty and the period after the Tang Dynasty. In the first period, Han people played a leading role, the two great unifications of the Han Dynasty and the Tang Dynasty was realized mainly by Han people. In the second period, the process of territory formation was led by the minorities of the borderland, as exemplified by the two great unifications of the Yuan and Qing Dynasties. The traditional Yi-Xia view was the main factor in causing this outcome. Being fettered by the traditional Yi-Xia view, it was difficult for the dynasties established by Han people to break through the contrived boundary of "Yi and Xia". Thus they controlled the borderland through the 'Jimi policy' (loose management) or 'Buzhi' policy (no management) and therefore hindered the process of territorial development. The dynasties founded by the borderland minorities had no such impediment, and moreover they were able to exert an influence on the traditional Yi-Xia view. Thus, China's territory was only formed after constant challenge to this concept.
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