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Civil War and the Chinese Garden

Tobie Meyer-Fong, Professor, History Department, Johns Hopkins University

The Chinese garden now symbolizes timeless national, cultural, and aesthetic values. But as real property in the past, gardens inevitably were subject to the vicissitudes of their times. This talk focuses on gardens and the Taiping Civil War (1851-1864). During the war, many gardens were reduced to tile shards and ash. Surviving gardens functioned as objects of longing and nostalgia, sites of refuge (physical and emotional), or a means to display status under the new regime. In the post-war period, gardens served as status symbols, places to commemorate loss or celebrate restoration, and venues for renewed sociability. In her talk, Professor Meyer-Fong will explore the multiple meanings associated with gardens, the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, and the Qing regime--in the past--and today.

Thursday, June 05, 2014 | 4:15 pm — 5:30 pm | RSVP Required
Lane History Corner, Building 200 - Room 307

Center for East Asian Studies