To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
The reign of Francis I (1515–1547) created a cultural shift in France, caused by the importation and adaptation of the humanist tradition, a tradition of Italian origin. The reasons for this were political.1 The French monarchy aimed to claim for itself the prestige associated with Italian Renaissance culture (in the artistic realm, but also in the scholarly and literary realms) and to strengthen its ties with Italy, a region in which France had important interests. These priorities complemented the concordat between the monarchy and the papacy (1516), which granted the king the right to name bishops and abbots and thus negated any political or financial gains the Protestant Reformation might have offered France. This milieu also produced the social context in which the young Calvin evolved. We will first examine a few stages of his education before offering an assessment of the years 1530–1534, centered around King Francis I’s creation of the first royal chairs.
The style of the various editions of the Institutes is directly related to the audience for which the book was written, for Calvin was convinced that any book had to be accommodated to the capacities of its intended audience. John Calvin originally wrote the Institutes to be a catechism for the pious evangelicals in France, who had come to faith in the Gospel but who needed to have their faith built up and strengthened. “My purpose was solely to transmit certain rudiments by which those who are touched with any zeal for religion might be shaped to true godliness.” Because the audience was ordinary believers who needed to be edified, Calvin adopted a style that was accommodated to their capacities. “The book itself witnesses that this was my intention, adapted as it is to a simple and, you might say, elementary form of teaching.”1 As many scholars have noted, the format of Luther’s Small Catechism is clearly evident in the form of the first edition of the Institutes, as it is structured along the lines of the Ten Commandments, the Creed, and the Lord’s Prayer, followed by an extended discussion of the sacraments.
Chapter 8, “South of the Clouds,” moves from the Mongolian steppe to Yunnan, the southwestern kingdom of the Prince of Liang, a Chinggisid noble and Great Yuan supporter. In the mid-thirteenth century, the Mongols conquered Yunnan, a previously independent kingdom (Nanzhao), as part of its broader war against the mighty Song dynasty in China. Mongol governance in Yunnan shaped power sharing among local elites in ways that influenced their response to Daidu’s fall in 1368, the Great Yuan’s diminished power, and the Ming court’s efforts to win recognition. This chapter charts Zhu Yuanzhang’s diplomatic and military offensives in Yunnan with particular attention to his attempts to turn local experience of Mongol rule to his advantage.
Chapter 6, “A Precarious Tale” explores the role of war, military men, and court drama in the early Ming’s rivalry with the Great Yuan. It also addresses the precarious nature of the early Ming court’s Chinggisid narrative. All contemporaries understood that military force was essential for political legitimacy. Field commanders defeated Great Yuan armies, conquered its lands, captured Chinggisid nobles, and seized key political emblems such as seals of state. Thus, military commanders also figured in the story that the early Ming court told of the Great Yuan. The Ming court widely disseminated news of high political theater, for instance the reception of Chinggisid nobles in Nanjing. However, both court drama and military commanders repeatedly disrupted the Ming court’s carefully scripted stories about inescapable Yuan defeat and inevitable Ming triumph. Commanders lost battles. Some were declared traitors. Political theater failed to go according to plan; on occasion it was dramatically undone by senior figures in the Ming court.
Chapter 9, “The Chinggisid Fold,” explores Zhu Yuanzhang’s correspondence with two other groups with deep ties to the Chinggisid imperial enterprise. The first were senior Great Yuan military commanders and Mongol nobles, primarily those based in today’s Liaoning and Jilin provinces to the northeast, the southern Mongolian steppe, and in Gansu and eastern Xinjiang. The second group consists of the Moghul khanate and the Timurid dynasty in Central Asia. Memory of Chinggis Khan and the institutional arrangements of the Mongol empire (including hereditary relations of leadership) were defining elements of both groups. This chapter argues that Zhu Yuanzhang worked hard to win the first group’s allegiance through a combination of military pressure, economic incentives, and argumentation. If he failed to sway the Great Khans and the Prince of Liang, the Ming founder did have some success among this critical group of Chinggisid supporters. Zhu Yuanzhang and his advisors invoked the Mongol empire’s inheritance in communications with the Timurid and Moghul polities. However, the early Ming court’s Chinggisid narrative was not compelling to them.
Chapter 7, “Letters to the Great Khan,” examines correspondences that Zhu Yuanzhang wrote to three successive Great Khans between 1368 and 1388. These missives examine Chinggis’ origins as a humble man of the people chosen by Heaven to unite the steppe and then subjugate much of Eurasia. They praise the glories of Qubilai, who united long-divided Chinese territory and ushered in a sparkling age of prosperity. They also chronicle the collapse of effective Yuan governance, which led to the rise of regional warlords, the spread of human suffering, and the disintegration of moral order. Perhaps most striking is the way Zhu Yuanzhang speaks as one ruler to another in these letters. He spends much time walking the Great Khans through the new reality of the day and their choices for the future. Zhu Yuanzhang’s correspondence did not alter the Great Khans’ views, but it does conform to what we know about the Ming founder’s insistence that people not merely obey his orders but also accept his views.
Chapter 5, “Telling Stories and Selling Rulership,” examines how Zhu Yuanzhang and his ministers created a story of the rise, glory, and irreversible fall of the Chinggisids for audiences at home. Primary audiences included not just educated Chinese men but also Mongols, Turks, Kitans, and Jurchens. Many felt a sense of loyalty to the Great Yuan. The early Ming court’s Chinggisid narrative highlighted such themes as the end of the Chinggisids’ allotted span of rule, Chinese renewal, the physical and political marginality of the post-1368 Yuan court, and the deficiencies of contemporary Chinggisid leadership. Emphasizing the superiority of Ming rulership, such a discursive strategy was intended to persuade contemporary audiences to forsake the Great Yuan and pledge loyalty to the Great Ming. Zhu Yuanzhang and his advisors worked hard to create a version of the past that served the needs of the present.
Moving beyond Ming territory and the Chinggisid world, Chapter 10 looks at how the early Ming court invoked the story of the Mongol empire in its relations with the kingdoms of Koryŏ, Japan, and the Great Việt (Đại Việt or most of the northern part of today’s Vietnam), which today are commonly lumped together as East Asia. The chapter reviews these three kingdoms’ markedly different experiences of the Mongol empire. It argues that the early Ming court tried, with uneven success, to exploit divergent memory of the Mongol empire to pursue pressing contemporary issues of diplomatic recognition, border populations, and coastal security. It also considers how the early Ming court gathered information on events in of Koryŏ, Japan, and the Great Việt, and how, on the basis of such intelligence, it tailored its Chinggisid narrative for different audiences.
This book explores how the world’s most powerful court told the story of history’s greatest empire. It traces how in the late fourteenth century the newly established Ming court (1368–1644) in China crafted a narrative of the fallen Mongol empire. The Ming court used this narrative to advance its military, political, and diplomatic objectives by shaping the perceptions and actions of audiences at home and abroad.
The conclusion reviews the book’s primary arguments and offers a few observations about what the early Ming court’s Chinggisid narrative tells us about enduring issues of history and its uses: the legacy of empire, historical memory, and rising powers’attempts to create compelling narratives that justify their new place in the world.
Policy scholars tend to view disproportionate policy and its two component concepts – policy over- and underreaction – as either unintentional errors of commission or omission, or nonintentional responses that political executives never intended to implement yet are not executed unknowingly, inadvertently or accidentally. This article highlights a conceptual turn, whereby these concepts are reentering the policy lexicon as types of intentional policy responses that are largely undertaken when political executives are vulnerable to voters. Intentional overreactions derive from the desire of political executives to pander to voters’ opinions or signal extremity by overreacting to these opinions in domains susceptible to manipulation for credit-claiming purposes. Intentional underreactions are motivated by political executives’ attempts to avoid blame and may subsequently lead to deliberate overreaction. This conceptual turn forces scholars to recognise the political benefits that elected executives may reap from deliberately implementing disproportionate policies, and that such policies can at times be effective.
Arendt argued that political thought and discourse have traditionally been misconceived by philosophers, who have typically measured them against philosophical standards, and so conceived them as crude or defective forms of philosophy. This chapter explains how she reconceived the main faculties of political thought (opinion, judgment, imagination), the central forms of political thought (narrative thought, exemplary thought, and what she called “representative thought”), and the central mode of political discourse (persuasion). She saw political thought and discourse as primarily non-theoretical, in contrast to the theoretical forms of thought and discourse central to philosophy. Her project was to rethink these non-theoretical forms of thought and discourse in light of their powers in the realm of politics, rather than in light of their weakness in the realm of philosophy. This distinction between theoretical and non-theoretical thought and discourse sets up the question of the next chapter: How did the political theories of classical philosophers distort or obscure the non-theoretical understanding of politics implicit in Greek literature and history?
This chapter examines the debate over the right and ability of countries to grant compulsory licenses on patented pharmaceutical products, including biologic drugs produced in living organisms, as a means of ensuring access to medicines. Opponents of such measures sometimes label them as “theft.” This chapter contemplates the validity of such theft rhetoric from an unconventional perspective: that of biblical teachings on what it means to steal. After an introduction to the issue, Part II describes the use of theft rhetoric in relation to intellectual property infringement broadly and drug patent compulsory licenses in particular. Part III challenges the contention, suggested by theft rhetoric, that compulsory licenses are morally wrong as a form of stealing, by considering the meaning of theft in the context of its Judeo-Christian origins. Part IV considers the cogency of the accusation that the issuance of compulsory licenses in developing countries destroys pharmaceutical company innovation incentives. Part V concludes that expanding the definition of theft to include, as the Bible does, the possibility that a property owner may be stealing from the poor, can help us to properly evaluate the morality of drug patent compulsory licenses.