The Significance of the Dunhuang Mogao Frescoes for Universal Education Today

  • Su Xiaojia (苏晓佳)Email author
  • Zhou Hongtao (周洪涛)
Part of the Spirituality, Religion, and Education book series (SPRE)


The name of Dunhuang (敦煌) is often associated with the images of dense sand obscuring the sky; the desolate and endless Gobi Desert; the barren Mt. Sanwei (三危, “Three Perils”); flying apsaras (female spirits in Buddhist mythology); and the ancient Buddha and Bodhisattvas in the Mogao Grottoes. With the passage of time, Dunhuang’s past glory was mostly buried in its historical ruins, but its indisputable beauty and magnificence have survived till today. The word Dunhuang first appeared in the Dawan Commentary of Shiji (《史记·大宛列传》). Ying Shao (应劭) from the East Han (approx. AD 153–196) noted, in the Geography Records of the Han (《汉书.地理志》), that “‘Dun’ means grand, and ‘Huang’ means prosperous” (Dunhuang Academy 2002, p. 6), showing that Dunhuang was a flourishing and renowned place. The famous Sino scholar Feng Jicai (冯骥才) wrote:


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Su Xiaojia (苏晓佳)
    • 1
    Email author
  • Zhou Hongtao (周洪涛)
    • 2
  1. 1.Beijing Royal SchoolBeijingChina
  2. 2.College of Design and Innovation (D&I)Tongji UniversityShanghaiChina

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