On the Development of the Houses of the Dai Villagers and Aristocrats

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Abstract

This paper discusses the essential distinctions between the traditional houses for the aristocracy and houses of the peasants in the traditional Dai society in Xishuangbanna during the 19th Century. The houses of the aristocracy and the temples adopted Han techniques for timber building structures to demonstrate their privileges in the society, their ownership of the land and their special relationship with Buddha and supernatural spirits. The houses of the peasants, on the other hand, developed an alternative structural system based on Han techniques but those were different from the ones adopted by the houses of the aristocracy. The study argues that the Dai people had embedded their own systems of belief and principles of organisation of the traditional society in the development of their houses.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3
Pages (from-to)50-64
Number of pages15
JournalEdinburgh Architecture Research (EAR)
Volume23
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 1996
Externally publishedYes

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