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Chinese Aesthetics

The Ordering of Literature, the Arts, and the Universe in the Six Dynasties

edited by Zong-qi Cai

This singular work presents the most comprehensive and nuanced studies available in any Western language of Chinese aesthetic thought and practice during the Six Dynasties (A.D. 220–589). Despite a succession of dynastic and social upheavals, the literati preoccupied themselves with both the sensuous and the transcendent and strove for cultural dominance. By the end of the sixth century, their reflections would evolve into a sophisticated system of aesthetic discourse characterized by its own rhetoric and concepts. A prologue details the historical context in which Six Dynasties aesthetics arose and sketches out its major stages of development. The ten essays that follow bring fresh perspectives to bear on important writings on literature, music, painting, calligraphy, and gardening. Grounded in close readings of primary texts, they reveal the complex, dynamic interplay between life and art, the sensuous and the metaphysical, and the artistic and the philosophicaleligious that lies at the heart of the aesthetic thought and practice of the time. As a whole, the collection demonstrates that Six Dynasties achieved a sophistication in aesthetic thought comparable in many ways to that of the West: The discussion of disinterestedness in art, aesthetic judgment, and how mental images mediate between the supersensible and the sensible are reminiscent of Kant. The findings of various Chinese critics provide much food for thought in the broad fields of comparative literature and aesthetics. Chinese Aesthetics will fill a gap in Western sinological studies of the period. It will appeal to scholars and students in premodern Chinese literary studies, comparative aesthetics, and cultural studies and be a welcome reference to anyone interested in ancient Chinese culture.

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Chinese Approaches to Literature from Confucius to Liang Ch'i-Ch'ao

W. Allyn Rickett

These essays, by Chinese and Western scholars, treat selected aspects of Chinese literary theory, history, and criticism from the age of Confucius to the beginning of the twentieth-century.

The topics examined include Confucius as a literary critic (Donald Holzman); the view of ch'i, or vital force, as a decisive element in creative writing (David Pollard); the literary theories of the eleventh-century poet and essayist Ou-yang Hsiu (Yu-shih Chen) and his contemporary Huang T'ing-chien (Adele Rickett); and the seventeenth-century philosopher-poet Wang Fu-chih (Siu-kit Wong). Other essays consider the Ch'ang-chou School of the Ch'ing dynasty (Florence Chia-ying Yeh Chao); the distinctive methods of criticism applied to the Dream of the Red Chamber by the Chih-yen chai commentators (John Wang); and the educative function of fiction as outlined by Liang Ch'i-ch'ao and Yen Fu at the turn of the century (C.T. Hsia).

Originally published in 1978.

The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

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The Chinese Classic of Family Reverence

A Philosophical Translation of the Xiaojing

by Henry Rosemont, Jr. and Roger T. Ames

Few if any philosophical schools have championed family values as persistently as the early Confucians, and a great deal can be learned by attending to what they had to say on the subject. In the Confucian tradition, human morality and the personal realization it inspires are grounded in the cultivation of family feeling. One may even go so far as to say that, for China, family reverence was a necessary condition for developing any of the other human qualities of excellence. On the basis of the present translation of the Xiaojing (Classic of Family Reverence) and supplemental passages found in other early philosophical writings, Professors Rosemont and Ames articulate a specifically Confucian conception of "role ethics" that, in its emphasis on a relational conception of the person, is markedly different from most early and contemporary dominant Western moral theories. This Confucian role ethics takes as its inspiration the perceived necessity of family feeling as the entry point in the development of moral competence and as a guide to the religious life as well. In the lengthy introduction, two senior scholars offer their perspective on the historical, philosophical, and religious dimensions of the Xiaojing. Together with this introduction, a lexicon of key terms presents a context for the Xiaojing and provides guidelines for interpreting the text historically in China as well as suggesting its contemporary significance for all societies. The inclusion of the Chinese text adds yet another dimension to this important study. The Chinese Classic of Family Reverence is sure to appeal to specialists of comparative and Chinese philosophy and to all readers interested in the enduring importance of the family.

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Chinese Fiction of the Cultural Revolution

Lan Yang

As the first comprehensive study of Chinese fiction of the Cultural Revolution, this pioneering work explores the position of the literature of this turbulent period in the context of contemporary China.The book covers the choice of subject matter, authorship and readership of Cultural Revolution fiction.

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Chinese Poetic Writing

The Case of Hong Kong

François Cheng, Translated by Donald A. Riggs and Jerome P. Seaton

Chinese Poetic Writing has been considered by many to be one of the most innovative studies of Chinese poetry. Cheng illustrates his text with an annotated anthology of 135 poems from the golden age of Tang Dynasty, featuring lively translations of the works of Tu Fu, Li Po, Wang Wei and other poets. The 1982 translation, based on the original French 1977 edition has been greatly expanded by Cheng with many new additions.

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Chinese Rhyme-Prose

Poems in the Fu Form from the Han and Six Dynasties Periods

Translated by Burton Watson • Preface by Lucas Klein

The fu, or rhyme-prose, is a major poetic form in Chinese literature, most popular between the 2nd century b.c. and 6th century a.d. Unlike what is usually considered Chinese poetry, it is a hybrid of prose and rhymed verse, more expansive than the condensed lyrics, verging on what might be called Whitmanesque. The thirteen long poems included here are descriptions of and meditations on such subjects as mountains and abandoned cities, the sea and the wind, owls and goddesses, partings and the idle life.

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The Chinese Written Character as a Medium for Poetry

A Critical Edition

Ernest Fenollosa

First published in 1919 by Ezra Pound, Ernest Fenollosa's essay on the Chinese written language has become one of the most often quoted statements in the history of American poetics. As edited by Pound, it presents a powerful conception of language that continues to shape our poetic and stylistic preferences: the idea that poems consist primarily of images; the idea that the sentence form with active verb mirrors relations of natural force. But previous editions of the essay represent Pound's understanding-it is fair to say, his appropriation-of the text. Fenollosa's manuscripts, in the Beinecke Library of Yale University, allow us to see this essay in a different light, as a document of early, sustained cultural interchange between North Americaand East Asia.Pound's editing of the essay obscured two important features, here restored to view: Fenollosa's encounter with Tendai Buddhism and Buddhist ontology, and his concern with the dimension of sound in Chinese poetry.This book is the definitive critical edition of Fenollosa's important work. After a substantial Introduction, the text as edited by Pound is presented, together with his notes and plates. At the heart of the edition is the first full publication of the essay as Fenollosa wrote it, accompanied by the many diagrams, characters, and notes Fenollosa (and Pound) scrawled on the verso pages. Pound's deletions, insertions, and alterations to Fenollosa's sometimes ornate prose are meticulously captured, enabling readers to follow the quasi-dialogue between Fenollosa and his posthumous editor. Earlier drafts and related talks reveal the developmentof Fenollosa's ideas about culture, poetry, and translation. Copious multilingual annotation is an important feature of the edition.This masterfully edited book will be an essential resource for scholars and poets and a starting point for a renewed discussion of the multiple sources of American modernist poetry.

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City Stage

Hong Kong Playwriting in English

Mike Ingham ,Xu Xi

City Stage is an anthology of recent Hong Kong English-language drama written for Hong Kong performers and audiences. All the plays were written in the last ten years and so capture and reflect the fast-developing multiculturalism of the Hong Kong scene – a somewhat paradoxical phenomenon in view of the 1997 return to China Mainland sovereignty.

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City Voices

Hong Kong Writing in English 1945 to the Present

Michael Ingham ,Xu Xi

City Voices is the first showcase of postwar Hong Kong literature originating in English. Fiction, poetry, essays and memoirs from more than 70 authors are featured to demonstrate 'the rich variety and vitality of the city's literary production'.

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The Classic Chinese Novel

A Critical Introduction

C. T. Hsia

C. T. Hsia examines six landmark texts: The Romance of the Three Kingdoms, The Water Margin, Journey to the West, Chin P’ing Mei, The Scholars, and Dream of the Red Chamber. In addition to providing historical and bibliographical information, he critiques structure and style, as well as major characters and episodes in relation to moral and philosophical themes. C. T. Hsia cites Western classics for comparison and excerpts each novel. Hailed as a classic upon its publication in 1968, The Classic Chinese Novel has remained the best single-volume critical introduction to the subject.

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