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Produced in conjunction with an exhibition (on view through February 10, 2008) of 39 books, prints, and maps from the Getty Research Institute's collections, this catalog focuses on a time when China was just opening to trade with Europe. Each catalog entry includes a selected depiction from the print work featured, mostly of Chinese life of the time, maps, scientific diagrams, and architectural views. Reproductions of the engraved and etched prints and woodcuts are in black and white, while color illustrations reproduce certain hand-colored prints. Six accompanying essays convey more background information and supplementary illustrations. Reed (head of collection development, Getty Research Inst. Lib.) and Demattè (Chinese art, Rhode Island Sch. of Design) write most of the essays, whose topics range from the development of contacts between the East and the West to Jesuit astronomers in China. Readers interested in Asian culture as well as librarians and book historians will find these discussions fascinating. The catalog should also appeal to those interested in religion because of the dominant role Jesuit missionary scholars and scientists played in the interchange of ideas during the centuries covered. For example, in one 17th-century woodcut of the Crucifixion, all the figures-including Christ-are depicted as Asians. Recommended for academic libraries.
—Anne Marie Lane