A Study on the Protection Strategy of Traditional Villages from the Perspective of Cultural Ecology—Take Wuhe Village, Julong Town, Yanting County, Mianyang City as an Example


Starting from the concept of cultural ecology, based on the data collection and field investigation of traditional villages in Wuhe Village, starting from cultural ecology, it points out the phenomena and problems such as the invasion of traditional village cultural ecology, the aging of cultural community, the disappearance of cultural space and so on. On the basis of the phenomena and problems such as the disappearance of cultural space, this paper puts forward the theoretical protection strategies of the overall protection of cultural ecology, the dynamic protection of cultural ecology and the protection of the diversity of cultural ecology.

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Dai, D. , Fu, J. and Zhao, C. (2019) A Study on the Protection Strategy of Traditional Villages from the Perspective of Cultural Ecology—Take Wuhe Village, Julong Town, Yanting County, Mianyang City as an Example. Open Journal of Social Sciences, 7, 88-98. doi: 10.4236/jss.2019.77009.

1. Background Interpretation

The Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Construction, the Ministry of Culture, the State Bureau of Cultural Heritage and the Ministry of Finance “Circular on the investigation of traditional villages” (Building Village (2012) 58) point out: traditional villages refer to the early formation of villages and rich traditional resources. Villages with certain historical, cultural, scientific, artistic, social and economic values should be protected [1] . Since China started the protection of traditional villages in 2012, after nearly 7 years of efforts, five batches of 6819 villages have been listed in the national “list of traditional Chinese villages”. Since 2013, 3 batches of 869 villages have been listed in “Sichuan Province”. In the list of traditional villages, the third batch of traditional villages in Sichuan Province in 2017, Mianyang City was selected as the 49th, of which Wuhe Village, Julong Town, Yanting County, was recorded. At present, people pay more and more attention to the protection of traditional villages. Based on the perspective of cultural ecology, this paper makes people have a certain new understanding of the traditional villages of Wuhe Village and actively puts forward the effective protection strategy of the traditional villages.

(data source: http://www.mohurd.gov.cn/index. And http://jst.sc.gov.cn/)

2. Cultural Ecology

2.1. Interpretation of Cultural Ecology

The concept of “cultural ecology” was first put forward by American anthropologist Stewart [2] , and then Sarings and Sevez gave a more detailed definition of cultural ecology. “Cultural ecology should include the relationship between cultures. The natural characteristics of the environment and place of residence of the superbody [3] . Cultural ecology is based on the existence of human beings, and cultural ecology is by no means a simple superposition of ecology and culture. The so-called cultural ecology is to use ecology to study the interaction between man and culture, and it is the survival wisdom formed by the interaction of various factors in the whole natural environment of human beings [4] . Domestic scholars begin to combine with the text Chemical ecology explores new ways to protect famous historical and cultural cities, such as Professor Tianqi Huang put forward the principle of “type-cultural species diversity”, which introduces the concept of cultural ecology into the protection of ancient cities and has certain maneuverability. In his research on the protection and renewal of historic blocks, Lin Xiang believes that the aborigines of historic blocks need to be protected as well as their material heritage, so as to prevent the blocks from losing their own sense of neighborhood, “sense of group” and “sense of security” [5] . The main research object is the cultural ecological protection of historical and cultural cities and blocks, but the lack of research and analysis of traditional villages. In this paper, various cultural and ecological elements of traditional villages will be reasonable. The cultural ecology is brought into the protection of traditional villages and the good relationship between development and protection is dealt with.

2.2. Construction of Traditional Village Cultural Ecosystem

Taking human needs as the center, according to Maslow’s demand hierarchy theory, human needs are divided into five levels from low to high, namely, physiological needs, security needs, social needs, respect needs, self-realization needs [6] , and the relationship between village people and culture can be constructed, which can be divided into four circles (Figure 1). The first circle refers to man, the most intelligent creature in nature, which can adapt to and transform nature. It is the core of the whole cultural ecosystem and the most active element in the system. The second circle refers to the need to meet people’s own material and spiritual needs, that is, housing needs, diet needs, safety needs, self-realization needs; The third circle refers to the forms expressed in order to meet the above needs, that is, architecture, food, faith and learning; the fourth circle refers to the types of culture produced in these forms. That is, building site selection and architecture itself culture, farming culture, Buddhist culture, filial piety culture and so on.

Taking people as the core, four circles of cultural ecology of Wuhe village are constructed [7] (Figure 2): the first circle layer refers to people, that is, the residents of traditional villages, is the core of the whole circle layer; The second circle refers to the different cultural circles produced by human values, which are manifested in human production, belief, diet and custom, and the second circle refers to the material appearance and carrier of these cultures, that is, farmland, architecture, site selection and public space. The fourth circle refers to the natural environment on which the appearance and carrier of matter depend, including geomorphology, climate and meteorology, biological vegetation, rivers, mountains and soil, and provides the material basis of internal and external energy information exchange for the whole traditional village.

The first model is based on the demand-level theory of Maslow, and the relationship between human and culture is mainly described from the human’s most basic demand level. The second model of construction is the high point of man-made, and expounds the cultural ecosystem of five and the village. The former is the foundation of the latter, the latter is the form of the former, the two are interdependent, mutual influence, the culture is not only in the environment, but also in the environment, under the movement of this kind of interaction, the material, the system and the spirit of the cultural ecosystem are gradually formed, A joint and complete interpretation of the five and village cultural ecosystems.

Figure 1. The relationship between man culture.

Figure 2. Wuhe village cultural ecological circle.

3. An Analysis of the Elements of Cultural Ecological Resources in Traditional Villages

3.1. General Situation of Wuhe Village

In the 21 years of Kangxi, Botong Zhang was praised by the emperor for building a house in Wuhe Village, so he chose the site to form the village. Wuhe Village longitude E107˚22', latitude N32˚14', height 303.5 m, located in the north of Julong Town, bordering Chang Town, Jinzhong Village in the east, Qiulin Town in Santai County in the west, Wuli Village in the south, Tongwu Village and Fenglin Village in the north (Figure 3). Wuhe Village is a typical hilly terrain, the highest mountain is Sanhe Village, the mountain and Pingba are banded around each other, forming a number of U-shaped bays, and the place names in the village are more than “surname bay”, such as Zhangjiawan, Mast Bay, Sujia Bay, Huojiawan and so on. The ancient book Yanting County Records of Qing Dynasty records the origin of the place names of Wuhe Village. Zhang, Sang, Huo, he and Zhao five families in Wuhe Village, led by Zhang surname, have lived in harmony since ancient times, and there has never been any dispute. Therefore, Wuhe Village has been named Wuhe Village.

3.2. Survival Needs Based on “Human”

3.2.1. Site Selection Culture of Residential Buildings

The site selection of residential buildings pays attention to the mountain shape, the back has the backrest mountain, the front has the pen frame, the left has the Azure Dragon, the right has the white tiger, the site selection is mostly distributed on the flat in the mountain bay, its architectural distribution forms the state distribution of one bay and one village (Figure 4). In the concept of “harmony between man and nature” in traditional culture, Chinese traditional architecture strives to respect nature when it is built, so that architecture and nature can be integrated [8] . Throughout the layout of residential buildings, site selection of “back mountain field”, pay attention to the protection of cultivated

Figure 3. Location analysis of Wuhe Village.

Figure 4. A brief picture of a village in Zhangjiawan.

land, the pursuit of harmonious symbiosis between architecture and environment. In accordance with the concept of “harmony between man and nature” in accordance with the traditional culture, a large number of cultivated land and farmland are retained in the site selection, which ensures the grain of the whole villagers. Sufficient, for the village to provide the most direct material security.

3.2.2. Residential Architectural Culture

According to local conditions, it is a common form of residential buildings in rural settlements [9] . Due to the unique natural environment and the distribution of resource elements in Wuhe Village, the architectural styles of residential buildings are various, most of them are one-shaped, L-shaped and triple house courtyard, most of them are single eaves suspended mountain roofs with wooden structures, and the beams and beams are mixed with beams and beams, and most of the buildings are one floor. Most of the plane is composed of hall, bedroom, kitchen and livestock circle. There are many earth courtyard dams in front of the building, no walls, and good neighborhood space.

Architecture, as one of the main creations of human labor, is an important part of culture [10] . The masthead Zhang residence, formerly known as Mianxing Zhang Mansion, with a construction area of 3200 square meters, was announced as a key cultural relics protection unit at the provincial level in 2007. Zhang’s residence is a wooden structure ancient building with six main doors running straight through the three-story patio dam (Figure 5). In Zhang’s folk house, the thermal insulation of eaves porch is used to minimize the direct sunlight, increase the shadow area, and then produce more cool space. Zhang’s folk house “back mountain wild”, in front of the open place blowing downhill wind, the building will accept this airflow, blowing all over the house, and thus greatly improve the ventilation effect of the house. Zhang’s residence is relatively complete. It preserves the traditional residential architectural style of Sichuan in Qing Dynasty, and the architectural layout is very clear and clear, which takes the middle axis as symmetrical, progressive layer by layer, flexible and changeable, and the space is staggered, which achieves the perfect combination of architectural community and natural environment.

3.2.3. Buddhist Culture

Buddhist Temple, formerly known as Bishan Temple, has many statues and incense has become the only Buddhist shrine in Julong Town. Before liberation, he set up township offices, run schools, built granaries, helped victims, gathered military service and managed the situation of the people. With the innovation of the times of social progress, the Temple of Bishan was demolished. Reform and opening up here has set up a center for cultural and recreational activities for the elderly, social harmony, prosperity and cultivation of the motherland, good sense of old age, self-cultivation and voluntary practice, for which the Temple of Bishan has been changed to Buddha Temple.

3.2.4. Farming Culture

Farming culture refers to a kind of custom culture formed by farmers in long-term agricultural production, which is to seek harmonious coexistence between man and nature. Farming culture can be divided into: farming material culture and farming non-material culture.

Figure 5. Plan 1/500 for the roof of Mianxing Zhang’s mansion.

1) Agricultural material culture: rich in crop products, mainly planting lilac flowers and trees, rice, wheat, rape, sweet potato, green vegetables, millet pepper and so on; on the hillside of Zhanghuashan, Wuhe Village, there are more than 20 tombstones, which are distributed in one word and confirmed as Han Tombs by the investigation of County Institute of Cultural Management. Longan ancient well, a total of two, divided into the front of the Zhang folk house, with the residential area as the dragon, similar to two longan named Longan ancient well, these two wells and Zhang’s folk house were built at the same time, the water quality is clear to learn from, the weather drought does not decrease, the two waterlogging does not increase, after 300 years, Still nourishing the descendants of Zhang.

2) Agricultural immaterial culture: stone carving and wood carving technology in traditional art, stone carving art is mainly reflected in pillar foundation, street along the stone, memory tablet and graveyard, etc., wood carving is reflected in doors, windows, cards and so on.

3.3. Based on the Spiritual Needs of “People”

Filial Piety Culture

1) Ancestor Worship

Folk culture is our precious cultural wealth, the root of collective memory, but also our communication channel with the past [11] . Different history and different regions give birth to a unique folk culture. The ancestor worship in Wuhe Village is a major feature, which is composed of the whole village (mainly composed of the Zhang nationality), and must rely on the existence of the village. It has been passed on for more than 100 years. Every year, on the second day of the first month, the Zhang people in the village and the people in other places gather in Zhang’s dwellings to sing songs of worship to ancestors, sacrifice sacrifices to ancestors, and give condolences to people over 70 years of age among the people of the ethnic group, and reward descendants who go to school. After the sacrifice, the middle-aged and the elderly play gongs and drums, young people dance dragons, celebrate a good harvest, pray for good luck in the coming year.

2) Xiaojie Square

The filial piety square built by the court for Jiang Shi, the wife of Taijie Zhang. In the second year of Kangxi, Taijie Zhang was a county decree here, and there were often ethnic struggles in Hong Kong, endangering the people. Taijie Zhang carried out encirclement and suppression and fought bravely against poultry enemies. Since then, the people of all ethnic groups have lived in harmony and worked in peace and contentment. After Taijie Zhang’s death, his wife Wang carefully filial piety parents, raise children, everything to filial piety first. In Wuhe village, Wang is respected by future generations, which is the vivid embodiment of “hundred lines of filial piety first” in the Confucian thought of the ancients. “filial piety” is an act advocated by Chinese traditional culture, that is, filial piety and kindness to parents should not go against their parents. The wishes of the elders and ancestors of the family are the expression of the relationship between species and stability.

4. Problems and Strategies of Cultural Ecological Protection and Development in Wuhe Village

In his book Cultural Ecology, Professor Zhengquan Huang included “anti-cultural ecology” in his conceptual system, pointing out that “people not only have the rational spirit of yearning for and pursuing harmony, but also have the ‘irrational’ spirit. This kind of destructive is often unconscious, anti-cultural ecology is not only the heterogeneity of this kind of cultural ecology, but also the contradictory aspect of cultural ecology” [12] . In other words, anti-culture is not a political reactionary, it is not necessarily destructive, anti-culture is not necessarily against cultural ecology. In the period of common development of tradition and modern times, the problem of protection and development is the core problem of traditional villages.

4.1. Cultural Ecological Protection of Wuhe Village

4.1.1. Cultural Ecology Is Invaded

Guangzhong Yu’s “homesickness” makes people want to hope that there is a unique culture different from other villages in this kind of “homesickness”. Traditional villages, which contain rich historical information and cultural landscape, are the carrier of country worries [13] . Under the strong impact of traditional culture and modern culture, the cultural ecology of Wuhe Village is invaded by modern architecture. The author makes a field investigation on Wuhe Village and arranges the buildings in the village, which can be divided into three categories: the first is the provincial cultural relics protection Zhang’s folk house; the second is the traditional style building; the third is the modern style building. This modern architecture has a certain influence on the overall style and appearance of the traditional village, breaking the sequence of the traditional village, if not stopped, the traditional architecture Will be covered up by these modern materials, it is easy to make the traditional village lose its authenticity.

4.1.2. Aging of Cultural Communities

The local cultural community is a human settlement environment formed through the accumulation of history, which is the result of natural selection and social selection [14] . However, there is a lack of corresponding sewage treatment facilities in the village, and the domestic sewage in the village is discharged at will in front of the house or farmland. In the traditional village, only Zhang’s dwellings have flushing toilets, and other dwellings are aqua privies, and the sanitary conditions need to be improved. Zhang’s folk house is a provincial cultural relics protection unit, the hospital is equipped with fire hydrant and other safety facilities, other residential buildings have no safety facilities, and there is a phenomenon of wire tension, there are hidden dangers, it is necessary to carry out safety facilities such as power facilities transformation. The elderly and children in the village are in the majority, and the labor force flows to the city. Town, showing the phenomenon of rural hollowing, which also appeared the local people do not understand the local culture, the understanding of the local culture gradually disappeared and so on.

4.1.3. The Disappearance of Cultural Space

What is important in traditional villages is the protection of material cultural heritage and the dual protection of intangible cultural heritage. In the aspect of material cultural heritage, some plans for the protection of material cultural heritage are formulated, and these protection plans are feasible. It is binding, such as the protection plan of Zhang’s folk houses, but for the protection of intangible cultural heritage, the cultural space dominated by folk customs is slowly disappearing. According to Bingan Wu, “generally speaking, all ethnic groups that hold traditional large-scale comprehensive activities in accordance with the time and fixed place commonly known as the folk conventions, folk cultural activities are non-material cultural activities.” Cultural Space of Heritage [15] . The ancestor worship activities in Wuhe Village were held in Zhang’s dwellings on the second day of the first month of each year, and now they have been transferred from Zhang’s dwellings to the forest of steles. From the large number of Zhang people who participated in the activities in the past to the majority of the participants are the elderly and children, the young people gradually lose their awareness of traditional folk culture, and the expressive force of cultural space is gradually weakening. Modern science and technology is gradually entering the village, affecting the way of production and life of human beings, folk customs are the best embodiment of cultural space, the folk customs of villages gradually lose “activity”, and the main body of architecture in cultural space, such as Zhang Family folk houses, compound and other traditional buildings act as spectators.

4.2. Cultural Ecological Protection Strategy of Wuhe Village

4.2.1. Diversity Protection of Cultural Ecology

Cultural ecosystem holds that “the diversity of cultural species is a necessary condition for cultural ecosystem to maintain dynamic balance” [16] . In the context of the intensification of globalization, cultural diversity has decreased, cultures have become convergent, and their original characteristics have gradually lost. Each culture is an indispensable factor in traditional villages, and these cultures are interrelated, interdependent and interdependent. Authenticity is the basis of cultural and ecological diversity protection.

4.2.2. The Integral Protection of Cultural Ecology

Cultural ecology is an inseparable whole, which is not only reflected in the main body of architecture, various folk customs, specific festivals, and the continuation of inheritors, but also includes the whole cultural space in which these architectural cultures are located. Carrying the natural environment and village space of culture. Within the cultural ecosystem, in addition to the reflection of externalization in the visible form, it is also important to protect the local spiritual culture and the psychological level of the people. They take the cultural space as the carrier and depend on the whole cultural ecosystem [17] . In the aspect of cultural ecological protection, we need to combine culture and its corresponding environment to protect as a whole.

4.2.3. Dynamic Protection of Cultural Ecology

Cultural ecology is a dynamic accumulation of historical process [18] . In the protection of cultural ecology, we cannot look at it from a simple static point of view, but in a dynamic way, which is a “living” and vital way. In the village, there are provincial demonstration leisure farms Wuhe Ecological Agriculture Tourism Park-Ziwei Flower Sea, with Ziwei Flower Sea as the theme, Zhang surname culture as the main historical and cultural connotation, three-dimensional circular agriculture as the construction model, the development of rural tourism. Such dynamic protection is effective, but to avoid over-development.

5. Conclusion

The problem of protection and development is a hot topic in traditional villages, and the study of cultural ecology in traditional villages has become an inevitable trend. The author selects Wuhe Village, a well-preserved and diverse cultural village, as the research object, analyzes the elements of cultural-ecological resources in its traditional villages, and puts forward the strategies of overall protection, dynamic protection and diversity protection of cultural ecology. It can make the natural environment and cultural ecology of the traditional village better integrate together, which is beneficial to the good development of the traditional village.


*Corresponding authors.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this paper.


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