The Columbia History of Chinese Literature

The Columbia History of Chinese Literature

by Victor H. Mair
     
 

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The Columbia History of Chinese Literature is a comprehensive yet portable guide to China's vast literary traditions. Stretching from earliest times to the present, the text features original contributions by leading specialists working in all genres and periods. Chapters cover poetry, prose, fiction, and drama, and consider such contextual subjects as

Overview

The Columbia History of Chinese Literature is a comprehensive yet portable guide to China's vast literary traditions. Stretching from earliest times to the present, the text features original contributions by leading specialists working in all genres and periods. Chapters cover poetry, prose, fiction, and drama, and consider such contextual subjects as popular culture, the impact of religion, the role of women, and China's relationship with non-Sinitic languages and peoples. Opening with a major section on the linguistic and intellectual foundations of Chinese literature, the anthology traces the development of forms and movements over time, along with critical trends, and pays particular attention to the premodern canon.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This ambitious history explores a wide range of Chinese literature, from the classics to humor to folk tales to oral traditions, and moves from ancient times to the end of the 20th century. The 54 chapters also include discussions of Chinese literature by women and minorities and assess its reception in Korea, Japan, and Vietnam. A lengthy chapter explains the language and script, emphasizing the diversity and the changes over time. All the discussions deal with the social, political, and philosophical backgrounds that either inhabit or inhibit the literature. Early texts, for example, are usually grounded in Confucian and Taoist thought, while more recent writings deal with, or at least suggest, political ideologies. This being a history and not an anthology, no literature is included, except for an occasional short quotation. And, of course, the many transliterated titles, authors' names, and dates make for difficult reading, even though everything is translated and Chinese characters are omitted. Mair (Chinese language and literature, Univ. of Pennsylvania) has overseen a host of excellent scholars writing on a vast subject. Highly recommended. Kitty Chen Dean, Nassau Coll., Garden City, NY Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
The China Quarterly
The Columbia History of Chinese Literature is indeed the most comprehensive single-volume introduction to Chinese literature, premodern and modern. It goes without saying that no library can afford not to make this impressive volume available to its readers, and that nobody with a serious interest in Chinese literature can possibly disregard this comprehensive and most inspiring volume.

— Bernhard Fuehrer

Journal of the American Oriental Society
A monumental contribution to the field of Chinese literary studies.

— Richard B. Mather

The China Quarterly - Bernhard Fuehrer
The Columbia History of Chinese Literature is indeed the most comprehensive single-volume introduction to Chinese literature, premodern and modern. It goes without saying that no library can afford not to make this impressive volume available to its readers, and that nobody with a serious interest in Chinese literature can possibly disregard this comprehensive and most inspiring volume.

Journal of the American Oriental Society - Richard B. Mather
A monumental contribution to the field of Chinese literary studies.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780231528511
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Publication date:
02/29/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
1368
File size:
35 MB
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This product may take a few minutes to download.

What People are saying about this

David R. Knechtges
The best Western language history of Chinese literature to date.... This is an extraordinarily rich volume that serves a long-standing need, both for the specialist and non-specialist reader.

Stephen Owen
The new Columbia History of Chinese Literature represents the 'state of the art' and offers the English reader the best introduction to the vast and varied world of Chinese literature. It provides the essential background for both the more traditional fields of Chinese literature as well as newer areas of interest that have been developed in both East Asia and the West. The work is comprehensive without being overwhelming and will serve the interests of both the curious beginner and the specialist.

Meet the Author

Victor Mair is professor of Chinese language and literature at the University of Pennsylvania and the founder and editor of Sino-Platonic Papers, an academic journal that examines diverse aspects of Chinese language, script, and culture, paying particular attention to historical relationships with other societies in Eurasia. Mair is also a critically acclaimed translator of The Art of War: Sun Zi's Military Methods and the editor of The Columbia Anthology of Traditional Chinese Literature.

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