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More information in the Catalyst record
The Cambridge History of Ancient China provides a survey of the cultural history of pre-imperial China. Fourteen leading specialists on early Chinese history and archaeology cover more than one thousand years. There are two chapters for each time-period - Shang, Western Zhou, Spring and Autumn, and Warring States: one on institutional history, based on both traditional and palaeographic literature, and one on material culture, based on archaeological evidence. There are also chapters on the Neolithic background, language, intellectual history, relations with Central Asia, and the debts of both the Qin and Han empires to these earlier time-periods.
This article is from an historical dictionary, so you can think of this like an outline of the basics -- but not something you'd want to quote in a paper. Useful stuff: The bibliography at the bottom! Use this to find sources. ADDED HINT: Search for THE BOOK TITLE (not the article title) in Catalyst.
It's JUST a bibliography. Definitely do NOT cite this. But... Useful stuff: It's organized by topic with 3-5 of the best sources on that topic listed. See, for instance, the section on "The Life of Confucius." ADDED HINT: Search for THE BOOK TITLE (not the article title) in Catalyst.
Remember, not all of these will be right for YOU -- but start browsing!
Types of Sources
Think of the paper you're writing as a story that you are narrating. In this story, you want both primary and secondary sources. Your job as a scholar of history is to weave together primary and secondary sources to make a coherent argument.
Primary source = A book, article, picture, letter, document, or other item that was produced in the past. (think: an episode of Game of Thrones)
Secondary source = Scholarship that is reflecting back upon and analyzing something that happened in the past. (think: an analysis of Game of Thrones in the AV Club)
Reference source = A high level compilation of pointers to primary and/or secondary sources. (think: The Game of Thrones IMDB page)
Database = Where these are stored. (think: HBO Go)