Strange Weather : Art, Politics, and Climate Change at the Court of Northern Song Emperor Huizong

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

Abstract

This study addresses aspects of culture and politics at the court of the Northern Song emperor Huizong 徽宗 (1082–1135, r. 1100–1125) during the middle years of his reign, particularly around 1110. It describes and analyzes the complex relationship between imperial court politics and the ways in which the arts, such as painting and calligraphy, and “auspiciousness reporting” played crucial roles in determining the political fates of individuals in the imperial court. One particular relationship, between Huizong and his powerful grand councilor Cai Jing 蔡京 (1046–1126), is exceptionally revealing. Cai Jing was, in alternation, both a beneficiary and a victim of the vicissitudes of the court during an age in which climate change and a fatal disconnect between the emperor and his realm helped to seal the fate of the Northern Song dynasty.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-41
Number of pages42
JournalJournal of Song-Yuan Studies
Volume39
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes

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Art and Politics
Climate Change
Song
Weather
Imperial Court
Fate
Seal
Alternation
Beneficiaries
Calligraphy
Art
Emperor
Vicissitudes
Reign

Bibliographical note

The Smithsonian Institution’s Postdoctoral Fellowship supported Pang Huping's research in 2007–2008.

Cite this

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abstract = "This study addresses aspects of culture and politics at the court of the Northern Song emperor Huizong 徽宗 (1082–1135, r. 1100–1125) during the middle years of his reign, particularly around 1110. It describes and analyzes the complex relationship between imperial court politics and the ways in which the arts, such as painting and calligraphy, and “auspiciousness reporting” played crucial roles in determining the political fates of individuals in the imperial court. One particular relationship, between Huizong and his powerful grand councilor Cai Jing 蔡京 (1046–1126), is exceptionally revealing. Cai Jing was, in alternation, both a beneficiary and a victim of the vicissitudes of the court during an age in which climate change and a fatal disconnect between the emperor and his realm helped to seal the fate of the Northern Song dynasty.",
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Strange Weather : Art, Politics, and Climate Change at the Court of Northern Song Emperor Huizong. / PANG, Huiping.

In: Journal of Song-Yuan Studies, Vol. 39, 2009, p. 1-41.

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

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