Phase 2: Finding Helpful Resources

Updated 6 years 6 months ago

Before I started all my research, I used keywords such as Bai, minority, architecture, Yunnan, Xizhou and China in search engines like Google. i would also try different combinations of the keywords I would use for my research. 

I would know that the information that I find is valid by visiting the site and seeing if there were any comments on the site. I would also see if there was info sited on the site. Then I would go to at least three different websites and compare the information I found and see if they wrote something similar or the same. 

I would also know who is responsible for publishing the information by looking at who posted/wrote the article if it says or just use the actual company that made the site. 

We had to find at least three experts on our topic and contact them to ask them for help. I have found experts but only managed to contact one of them due to the fact there was no contact address found when searching. I am planning on interacting and finding more information by talking with the experts here in Xizhou. 

Experts Contacted: 

Professor Yung Ho Chang

Contacted by: email

I chose to contact this person because he is a Professor on Architecture in MIT and has also studied architecture in China. He is also interested in traditional architecture so I thought he could be a good person to contact and choose as my expert. 

Sample Email:

Dear ______.

Hello. My name is Clara _____. I am an 8th Grader in Shanghai American School and I am doing a project about Bai minority architecture. I am currently in a village called Xizhou located in Yunnan, China and I wondered if you could comment on my work. These are the questions that I want to research on during my time here.

1. How are the houses exactly structured? 

2. Why do they build their houses this way?

3. What is it made out of? 

4. Are there still people making these?

5. Around what period of time were these structures made? And what is so different about them?

6. What sort of symbols are commonly used?

7. What colors are commonly used and why?

8. How do they maintain the beauty of the houses and structures?

I have a site where I am uploading all my work on this project. It is It would be great if you could leave some comments or perhaps send me some information that could help me with my project. 

 Thank You,

 Clara _____ 


Reply: Currently none 


Three to five's 

Da Hui Wang:

Today I interviewed a person at the Linden Centre staff called Da Hui Wang. This person told me that there was an hotel just straight ahead and left from the Linden Centre and the owner was an architect. He did say that he wasn't from Xizhou or just around here but said that he could still know a bit about the Bai architecture. He also said that the books there had some information about it. The name of this hotel is 乌瓦 (wu wa). 

I chose this person to interview because he works in the Linden Centre so I thought that he would know a lot about Xizhou in general. 

Xiao Tang: I interviewed Xiao Tang today and she gave me a source to this other person. She told me she knew a friend that previously wrote an article about architecture. She gave me her friend's number and I am planning on contacting her friend soon. She also said that I should talk to Mr. Yang, the main person who renovated YZR, since he would know the most about the Bai architecture. 

I chose Xiao Tang to interview because she had grown up here in Xizhou so she wouldhave a lot of experience with the people around here. Since she also works at the Linden Centre, I knew that she would have contacts with a lot of other people that could help with my project. 

Mr. T: I also talked to Mr. T. He told me that other than Mr. Yang, I could talk to Mr. Duan. Mr. Duan owns a house that has been around for a very long time. Although it has been renovated a few times, he said that Mr. Duan would most likely know the house very well. He said that Mr. Duan would know who built the house and what had happened to it throughout the times. He also mentioned that since Mr. Duan is the eldest son of the eldest son (and so forth) he would know the history of the house the best. He also told me that there was another person called Mr. Yang who actually owned a toy shop in Xizhou but was very observant so that he would know a lot about the architecture here. 

I chose to Mr. T because he has a lot of experience being here in Xizhou and he might know some people that could help me from he previous trips here and perhaps last years trip. 

Books in the Linden Centre: 

At the Linden Centre, there are some books on Chinese architecture which would help me for my project. Recently, I have found this book at the Linden Centre called Residential Houses & Buildings in Yunnan from the Ming and Qing Dynasties which was photographed by Chen Yunfeng and written by Zhang Zuo. It has a lot of photos and descriptions about most of the places in Yunnan. There is a section on Xizhou Bai architecture which I have been reading. 

Hey I'm Clara. I'm an 8th Grader in Shanghai American School Puxi. I am Korean though I've lived in Korea for four years, the US for two, Singapore for six and Shanghai for about a year and a half. I love challenges and trying new things. I so excited about being in Xizhou.