Han Dynasty Dbq

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1) Thesis: During the Han Dynasty, techonogy was almost exclusively viewed positively, while in the Roman Empire, the attitude regarding technology varied.
2) Group 1: In the Han China, technology was seens as a way to improve the quality of goods and improve the lives of the general population.
a) Doc 2: A Han government official by the name of Huan Guan wrote that the govt. monopoly on iron should be lifted so that families with pride in their work could be able to construct weapons, rather than have prisoners with no regard for the quality of the weapons construct them.
b) Doc 4: In a government sponsored history of the early Han Dynasty, an annonymus source writes about Tu Shi and how he “destroyed evil doers” (Doc 4) and “wished to save their
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a) Doc 8: The Roman govt. official Fontinus praised technology. He claimed that while the achievements of the Greeks looked pleasing, they served no functional purpose and that Roman developments were practical, as well as visually appealing.
i) Bias: Fontinus be praising the achievements of the Romans due to the fact that Britton was not a desirable post for a high ranking Roman official and that he would be better suited as the water commissioner of Rome in Rome.
b) Doc 6: The Greek-born Roman citizen and official Plutarch wrote about Gaius Gracchus and how he constructed roads and bridges throughout the vast empire. Plutarch praises Gracchus for making the roads functional and visually pleasing.
4) Group 3: While some Romans, like Fontinus and Plutarch, advocated and praised technology, others found technology useless and revolting.
a) Doc 5: In Cicero’s On Duty, he criticizes technology and craftsmen for their “vulgar” occupation and their lack of skill.
i) Bias: Cicero’s tone has a hint of arrogance probably due to the fact that he was an aristocrat that has no knowledge of the life of an average
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