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124 China Review International: Vol. 5, No. ?, Spring 1998 communities, and so they are good places to observe a human community at work and at play, to note the awakened craft of its response to history." 4.See his own preface to the Soushen milan ÎSIÎÎ&|Ï> which he wrote in 1113 during the reign of Huizong '$tm. The Song edition of this text is included in the Xu Guyi congshu A-S-JESe. 5.See Tangdai congshu MiXWt (Taipei: Xingxing Shuju, 1971), p. 3. 6.See his reference to Fernand Braudel's "the three levels of historical change" on p. 65. 7.For the topoi or motifs in Tang fiction, see Karl S. Y. Kao, Classical Chinese Tales ofthe Supernatural and the Fantastic (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1985), pp. 40-41. Cf. Campany, Strange Writing, pp. 260-265. Dudbridge uses the "inner and outer stories" formula loosely defined in Kao's book, but he fails to note Kao's discussion of the narrative structure of Tang zhiguai fiction. 8. 1 am referring to the texts concerning the "lingyan" MM (efficacy) generated from the recitation ofthe sutra, such as the Jingangjing lingyan ji aÉHffiiitœlE, by Xiao Yu URS (early Tang); the Mingbaoji ^SzIE, by Tang Lin MWa (dates unclear); and the Jingangjingjiyanji # HUHAfEfE, by Meng Xianzhong SilKüS (dates unclear)—all ofwhich predated the Guangyiji. For a brief discussion of these texts, see Donald Gjertson, Miraculous Retribution: A Study and Translation of Tang Lin's Ming-pao chi (Berkeley: Institute of Buddhist Studies, 1989), pp. 31-45. Helen Dunstan. Conflicting Counsels to Confuse the Age: A Documentary Study ofPolitical Economy in Qing China, 1644-1840. Michigan Monographs in Chinese Studies, vol. 73. Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 1996. 363 pp. Hardcover $50.00, isbn 0-89264-115-0. This book, as the subtitle A Documentary Study indicates, is primarily a collection of translated documents that relate to the political economy of late imperial China. In her preface, Helen Dunstan notes how analysis dominates in contemporary scholarship, and that the documentary evidence which provides the basis for this analysis disappears into the numerical obscurity of footnotes. One ofher aims in this book is to shift the balance a little and bring some of the sources back into the foreground of debate. But the book is more than just an excellent collection of translated documents. It also represents a significant attempt to advance our understanding of the role of the imperial state in the economy by seeking to© 1998 by University establish that there was considerable diversity of opinion regarding the issue of ofHawai'i Press"nourishing the people" {yangmin ÜJS;), and, in particular, that there was an antithesis between those who believed that an activist state was crucial in order to fulfill this goal and those who argued that the market would deliver the desired Reviews 125 outcome in a far more effective way. These are complex issues that continue to engage and frustrate many ofus today; thus it is interesting to observe how Qing administrators wrestied with them during the eighteenth century (while the documents range from early to high Qing, most are drawn from the eighteenth century ). Helen Dunstan develops our understanding ofthese issues both through the selection ofdocuments for inclusion in the collection and in the analytical essays with which she introduces die documents. In the first chapter, Dunstan reviews some of the classical foundations of Confucian paternalism and then goes on to consider how these ideas influenced the daily lives ofofficials during the Qing. The documents that follow in this chapter reveal in various ways an activist view of the role of government. Perhaps the most interesting documents here are those in which officials seek ways to ensure that adequate grain supplies could reach heavily populated but droughtprone regions ofNorth China. The proposals put forward by these officials involve attempts to use the difficult rivers of the region to transport grain, and while many of them proved unworkable they were nonetheless ingenious attempts to enact a commitment to "nourishing the people." Unfortunately there is no map in this section. Some readers will have an appropriate atlas on their shelves, but not all...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-9367
Print ISSN
1069-5834
Pages
pp. 124-128
Launched on MUSE
2011-03-30
Open Access
No
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