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Great Wall of China

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How did the great wall contribute to China’s historic characterization of being isolated?

            The great-wall of China was built between 5th Century and 16th century BC. Its purpose was to protect the borders of China, especially the Northern borders, during successive dynasties. The construction of the wall came as a result of a desire to protect states that had come up in China as a consequence of the fall of Zhou kingdom. The wall would hence cut out the land from its neighbors because of limited access.

            Although the wall protected China from its enemies, it had the effect of isolating it from the others. China was formerly thought to follow a traditional lifestyle isolated from the rest of the world. Traditional culture prevented progress (Bol, nd). China viewed itself as to be the larger world and, therefore, refused to accept any influence from outside. The great wall served the purpose of enhancing this isolation. Though intended for protection against invasions, the wall meant that interactions with the outside world would be limited. With this limited interactions, the Chinese would stick to themselves and follow their unique culture.

            Some argue that most of the dynasties believed accepting outside influence was like admitting that there was a larger world than China (Bol, nd). So to maintain their belief that they were the larger world, they shunned any external influence. Of course, the wall would prove to be of great significance in placing the people of China together and preventing others from accessing the states of China. With this limited interaction with the outside world, it would mean that the Chinese culture would remain intact free from any influences from other cultures. They would also not have their influence on others, although China did have influence outside its walls.

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