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Law and Society in China

Vai I. Lo

Law and Society in China examines the interplay between law and society from imperial to present-day China. This synoptic book traces the developments of law in Chinese societies, investigates the role of law in social governance, and discusses China’s ongoing reforms towards the rule of law with Chinese characteristics. In fostering a comprehensive, rather than piecemeal and disconnected, understanding of the interaction between law and society in China, this book will reduce misconceptions about and enhance appreciation for Chinese law.
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Overview of Chinese Dynasties

Vai I. Lo


Gregorian Calendar

Xia Dynasty

2070–1600 BC

Shang Dynasty

1600–1046 BC

Zhou Dynasty

West Zhou

1046–221 BC

1046–771 BC

East Zhou

Spring and Autumn Period

Warring States Period

 770–221 BC

770–476 BC

475–221 BC

Qin Dynasty

221–207 BC

Han Dynasty

206 BC–AD 220

Three Kingdoms

AD 220–265

Jin Dynasty

AD 265–420

Southern and Northern Dynasties

AD 420–589

Sui Dynasty

AD 581–618

Tang Dynasty

AD 618–907

Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms

AD 907–960

Song Dynasty

AD 960–1279

Yuan Dynasty

AD 1271–1368

Ming Dynasty

AD 1368–1644

Qing Dynasty

AD 1644–1911

Source: Data retrieved from 中国政府门户网站 [], 《中国历史概况》[Overview of Chinese History], 24 May 2005–05/24/content_436.htm.