The Selected Poems of Tu Fu

Overview

For over a millennium, Chinese literati have almost unanimously considered Tu Fu (712-770 A.D.) to be their greatest poet.
Tu Fu radically altered poetry as he found it in the High T’ang period. In addition to making formal innovations in language and structure, he extended the range of acceptable subject matter to include all aspects of public and private experience, thus becoming in the words of translator David Hinton, “the first complete ...

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The Selected Poems of Tu Fu

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Overview

For over a millennium, Chinese literati have almost unanimously considered Tu Fu (712-770 A.D.) to be their greatest poet.
Tu Fu radically altered poetry as he found it in the High T’ang period. In addition to making formal innovations in language and structure, he extended the range of acceptable subject matter to include all aspects of public and private experience, thus becoming in the words of translator David Hinton, “the first complete poetic sensibility in Chinese literature.”
This edition of The Selected Poems of Tu Fu is the only comprehensive selection of the poet's work currently available in English. While retaining a scholar's devotion to the text, Hinton has attempted “to recreate Tu Fu's poems as new systems of uncertainty." By reflecting all the ambiguity and density of the originals, he has created compelling English poems that significantly alter our conception of Chinese poetry. Included with the poems are the translator’s introduction and translation principles. as well as a biography of Tu Fu; together these provide a fascinating portrait of a uniquely sensitive spirit during one of the most tumultuous periods in Chinese history.

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Editorial Reviews

Gary Snyder
“Tu Fu said ‘A poet's ideas are noble and simple.’ But Tu Fu does not seem so simple to us. His richly-layered work is well represented in these crisp translations. The background notes are invaluable. One of the world's finest poets is made available here.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811211000
  • Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
  • Publication date: 6/28/1989
  • Pages: 173
  • Sales rank: 417,545
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

David Hinton's many translations of classical Chinese poetry and philosophy have earned wide acclaim for creating compelling contemporary texts that convey the actual texture and density of the originals. He has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship as well as numerous fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. In 1997, he received the Landon Translation Award from the Academy of American Poets. He lives in East Calais, Vermont.

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