An Analysis of Ancient Xishuangbanna Dai Pottery Craft and Cu ...

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Since the 1950s, many well-known archaeologists worldwide have conducted several investigations on the Dai slow-wheel pottery craft and believe it represents China’s primitive art. In 2006, Dai slow-wheel pottery was included in the first batch of the national intangible cultural heritage list by the Chinese State Council. As the most vital feature of Dai pottery, the slow wheel has retained its features since the Neolithic Yang Shao Culture. In the past, the Dai slow-wheel pottery craftsmanship was only passed down through inheritance to female family members, from mother or mother-in-law to daughter or daughter-in-law. From digging clay from the riverbank, preparing the soil, making pottery, firing pottery, through selling, they were all done by women. Therefore, it can be seen from these phenomena that the ancestors of the Dai culture had a natural division of labor according to gender. However, owing to the development of society, the traditional Dai slow wheel is withdrawing from the market, and a new Dai pottery is emerging. This article emphasizes the local culture of the Dai minority and analyzes the differences and connections between traditional Dai slow-wheel pottery and new Dai pottery. Additionally, this article introduces the different inheritance modes of traditional Dai pottery and new Dai pottery. The objectives of this article are (1) to understand the Dai pottery craft technique, and (2) to understand Dai minority culture diversity in Xishuangbanna.