Li Jie, the author of this treatise, strenuously sought orthodox roots from classical texts and earlier legitimized documents for the Song official standards on building practice. The building methods and architectural terminology that he recorded from oral accounts of craftsmen also reflect a large amount of intriguing cultural phenomena during the Northern Song period.
I consider the architectural terminology of the YZFS as an important carrier of popular architectural cultures and distinctive architectural concepts during the 10th to 12th centuries. My research has indicated that not only the naming of architectural components in this treatise was affected by the Song literature, but the arts of painting, sculpture, and architecture during the Northern Song period also were aesthetically in harmony. In addition, this dissertation reconstructs a systematic Chinese architectural metaphor that underlies the nomenclature for bracketing in the Yingzao fashi treatise.
Here, bracketing elements are likened to flowers, sprays, branches, and leaves.
- Document - Chinese Architecture and Metaphor: Song Culture in the Yingzao Fashi Building Manual
With the aid of other contemporary texts, my research indicates that in the 10th to 12 th-century China, both craftsmen and literati perceived bracketing as flowering trees. To some extent, therefore, Feng reverses the major trends in the field of China's architectural history in his attempt to reinstate the historical allusions and reconsider those imprecise and metaphorical elements, to make the text contextual again in its specific cultural and intellectual background.
This in turn will help us grapple with the "construction of the knowledge field of architecture in premodern China" p. The contribution of the work to current scholarship on the YZFS will be assessed later in this review, but first of all I would like to turn to what Feng does in the book to re-contextualize the YZFS in its time.
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Shifting the focus away from its technical content, the author asks a set of very different questions in regard to, for example, its underlying state ideology, literary tradition and associations, and different components that together Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide. Forged from a partnership between a university press and a library, Project MUSE is a trusted part of the academic and scholarly community it serves.
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