P43. East Asian Archaeology

Session: Session 6, 2:00 – 3:30 pm, Saturday 9/30

Category: Individual Papers

Location: Knowledge

Chair: Yujie Pu (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign)

Paper Presenters: James Coburn (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign), Jinglin Li (Arizona State University), Boxi Liu (Bard Graduate Center)

Continental Connections and the Development of the Yamato Culture

Speaker: James Coburn
Role: Paper Presenter
Institution/Affiliation: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Abstract: In the development of the Japanese culture, two key issues need to be addressed, the first being where it was formed. The second is who formed it. There are two main theories as to where the culture was formed at. These are the Kinki and Kyushu theories; however, this is only part of the problem. This paper will focus on the who. At the end of the Late Jomon period, there was a massive influx of people and new technology. Technology that will help establish centralized states and create an unbreakable connection between the continent and the Japanese archipelago. The Toraijin, Native Koreans who left their homeland for different reasons, played a massive part in the development of the Yamato culture. This paper will also focus on the material evidence that can help us trace the movement of these people from the Korean peninsula into the archipelago. It will also help in the establishment of the centralized location of the Yamato culture.

From Ground to Underground: The Representation of Northern Song-Style Literati Paintings in the Jin Tomb at Yuanzhuang Village, Shaanxi

Speaker: Jinglin Li
Role: Paper Presenter
Institution/Affiliation: Arizona State University
Abstract: The Jin tomb at Yuanzhuang Village, Shaanxi, incorporates a substantial number of landscape murals in Northern Song style. The discovery of such an abundance of literati landscape paintings is rare among the Jin dynasty tombs. This paper will focus mainly on the causes and significance of these murals. The relationship between specific ornamental designs, regional culture, and aesthetic genre will be examined in considerable detail, and an attempt will be made to comprehend how these elements constitute the spiritual expression of the Jin people, and the prevalent and developing aesthetic consciousness caused by the mobility of time, societies, and regions. Through a detailed analysis of murals and brick reliefs with predominantly female figures, such as ‘the portraits of four beauties,’ on the north and east wall of Tomb M4 at Yuanzhuang Village, this paper also aims to demonstrate an implicit emphasis on gender elements within the decorative images and analyze the reflection of the Confucian notion of art of the period. This paper does not only limit the study to compare the artistic expression of painting; the artistic design of murals in Jin tombs in Shaanxi are distinct from those of the Central Plains. Moreover, the ornamental elements in this burial environment can reveal information about ideology, and aesthetic notions of Jin.

Reconciliation and Syncretism: A Study of the Stupa-Shaped Jar From the Tomb of Qibi Ming

Speaker: Boxi Liu
Role: Paper Presenter
Institution/Affiliation: Bard Graduate Center
Abstract: Cremation, a prescribed and prevalent mortuary practice in Buddhism, was widely adopted by Tang-dynasty Buddhists and various nomadic groups in Medieval Central Asia. However, this funerary practice at the time clashed with the longstanding Confucian notions of filial piety and protection of the body. To unveil how a second-generation Central Asian immigrant of Tang China tackled this conundrum, the present study decodes and reconsiders the layered connotations embedded in a stupa-shaped jar with filial piety scenes from the tomb of Qibi Ming in Xianyang, Shaanxi Province. This paper argues that the stupa-shaped jar was probably a substitute for the aboveground tomb stupa erected for a deceased Buddhist. Placing such a stupa-shaped jar in a lay follower’s tomb not only accumulated merits for the deceased or the descendants, but also reconciled the conflict between the Buddhist funerary practice and the Confucian concept of filial piety. In Qibi Ming’s case, it is highly possible that Qibi Ming’s descendants specially commissioned this particular stupa-shaped jar with four filial piety scenes to practice their family virtues and honor their erudite and virtuous father. Additionally, by comparing the strategy of compiling The Sutra on the Profundity of Filial Love with the decorative scheme of the stupa-shaped jar with filial piety scenes, this paper speculates that when developing new products for funerary or religious purpose, Tang potters would have drawn inspiration from the prevailing Buddhist texts and incorporated that model into ceramic production.