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Journeys in time 2010-5-29 Secrets of the Fujian Tulou Part 4- Home sweet home

05-29-2010 16:44 BJT


Now, a tulou is a unique type of multi-storey dwelling built of rammed earth. Tulous were what the Hakka people of Fujian Province, once called home. But a Tulou was far more than an ordinary place to live; it was also a stronghold where families found refuge from attacks by bandits. Most of the Tulous were built during the period from the 12th century, up to the 20th. They tended to vary in size – with the largest capable of housing up to 600 people. In general, the residents of a single Tulou belonged to the same clan. This communal lifestyle required that a system of management be in place, to ensure peace and harmony in the community.

The standards of ethics promoted inside a tulou were based on teachings passed down from a clan’s ancestors. In this way, over the years a strong moral code developed within the community. Still today, these values are reflected in many aspects of the people’s lives.

The Hakka people, by stressing the importance of education, achieved some notable advances, particularly in developing cultural activities to enrich their communal life. And yet, despite living in their closed communities in a relatively isolated part of the country, they maintained a keen interest in the affairs of state.

In fact, all this illustrates the essence of what makes the Hakka people unique. Living in their earthen towers, they have faithfully kept alive their own traditions. And yet, at the same time, they have also borrowed from Western civilization.  Thank you for staying with us on today’s Journeys in Time. Our series on the Fujian Tulous will continue in our next programme, when we’ll be seeing how the descendents of the Hakka people in Yongding have made their homes more comfortable places in which to live.

Editor:James |Source: CNTV.CN

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