In this Book

Princeton University Press
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This is the fifth and final volume in David Roy's celebrated translation of one of the most famous and important novels in Chinese literature. The Plum in the Golden Vase or, Chin P'ing Mei is an anonymous sixteenth-century work that focuses on the domestic life of Hsi-men Ch'ing, a corrupt, upwardly mobile merchant in a provincial town, who maintains a harem of six wives and concubines. The novel, known primarily for its erotic realism, is also a landmark in the development of the narrative art form--not only from a specifically Chinese perspective but in a world-historical context.

Written during the second half of the sixteenth century and first published in 1618, The Plum in the Golden Vase is noted for its surprisingly modern technique. With the possible exception of The Tale of Genji (ca. 1010) and Don Quixote (1605, 1615), there is no earlier work of prose fiction of equal sophistication in world literature. Although its importance in the history of Chinese narrative has long been recognized, the technical virtuosity of the author, which is more reminiscent of the Dickens of Bleak House, the Joyce of Ulysses, or the Nabokov of Lolita than anything in earlier Chinese fiction, has not yet received adequate recognition. This is partly because all of the existing European translations are either abridged or based on an inferior recension of the text. This complete and annotated translation aims to faithfully represent and elucidate all the rhetorical features of the original in its most authentic form and thereby enable the Western reader to appreciate this Chinese masterpiece at its true worth.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title page, Copyright, Dedication
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. List of Illustrations
  2. p. ix
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. p. xi
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  1. Cast of Characters
  2. pp. xiii-lxvi
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  1. 81. Han Tao-kuo Takes Advantage of a Chance to Appropriate the Goods; T’ang Lai-pao Defrauds His Master and Disregards His Benevolence
  2. pp. 1-16
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  1. 82. P’an Chin-lien Makes an Assignation on a Moonlit Night; Ch’en Ching-chi Enjoys Two Beauties in a Painted Bower
  2. pp. 17-34
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  1. 83. Ch’iu-chü, Harboring Resentment, Reveals a Clandestine Affair; Ch’un-mei Transmits a Note to Facilitate a Lovers’ Rendezvous
  2. pp. 35-53
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  1. 84. Wu Yüeh-niang Creates a Stir in the Temple of Iridescent Clouds; Sung Chiang Uprightly Frees Her from the Ch’ing-feng Stronghold
  2. pp. 54-71
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  1. 85. Wu Yüeh-niang Surprises Chin-lien in the Act of Adultery; Auntie Hsüeh Agrees to Sell Ch’un-mei on a Moonlit Night
  2. pp. 72-89
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  1. 86. Sun Hsüeh-o Instigates the Beating of Ch’en Ching-chi; Dame Wang Marries Off Chin-lien to the Highest Bidder
  2. pp. 90-112
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  1. 87. Dame Wang Hungers after Wealth and Receives Her Just Reward; Wu Sung Kills His Sister-in-law and Propitiates His Brother
  2. pp. 113-130
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  1. 88. P’an Chin-lien Appears in a Dream in Commandant Chou Hsiu’s Home; Wu Yüeh-niang Contributes a Gift to a Subscription-Seeking Monk
  2. pp. 131-150
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  1. 89. On the Ch’ing-ming Festival the Widow Visits the New Grave; Wu Yüeh-niang Blunders into the Temple of Eternal Felicity
  2. pp. 151-173
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  1. 90. Lai-wang Absconds Together with Sun Hsüeh-o; Sun Hsüeh-o Is Sold to Chou Hsiu’s Household
  2. pp. 174-193
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  1. 91. Meng Yü-lou Is Happy to Marry Li Kung-pi; Li Kung-pi in a Fit of Rage Beats Yü-tsan
  2. pp. 194-217
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  1. 92. Ch’en Ching-chi Is Entrapped in Yen-chou Prefecture; Wu Yüeh-Niang Creates a Stir in the District Yamen
  2. pp. 218-243
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  1. 93. Wang Hsüan Relies on Righteousness to Help the Poor; Abbot Jen in the Desire for Profit Invites Disaster
  2. pp. 244-268
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  1. 94. Liu the Second Drunkenly Beats Ch’en Ching-chi; Sun Hsüeh-o Becomes a Trollop in My Own Tavern
  2. pp. 269-288
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  1. 95. P’ing-an Absconds with Jewelry from the Pawnshop; Auntie Hsüeh Cleverly Proposes a Personal Appeal
  2. pp. 289-308
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  1. 96: Ch’un-mei Enjoys Visiting the Pools and Pavilions of Her Old Home; Commandant Chou Hsiu Sends Chang Sheng to Look for Ch’en Ching-chi
  2. pp. 309-329
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  1. 97. Ch’en Ching-chi Plays a Role in the Commandant’s Household; Auntie Hsüeh Peddles Trinkets and Proposes a Marriage Match
  2. pp. 330-348
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  1. 98. Ch’en Ching-chi Opens a Tavern in Lin-ch’ing; Han Ai-chieh Encounters a Lover in a Bordello
  2. pp. 349-369
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  1. 99. Liu the Second Drunkenly Curses Wang Liu-erh; Chang Sheng Wrathfully Kills Ch’en Ching-chi
  2. pp. 370-390
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  1. 100. Han Ai-chieh Seeks Her Father and Mother in Hu-chou; Ch’an Master P’u-ching Rescues Souls from Perdition
  2. pp. 391-420
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 421-500
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 501-524
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 525-556
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781400848157
Print ISBN
9780691157719
MARC Record
OCLC
752286476
Pages
624
Launched on MUSE
2016-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
N
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