In this Book

summary

Fiction criticism has a long and influential history in pre-modern China, where critics would read and reread certain novels with a concentration and fervor far exceeding that which most Western critics give to individual works. This volume, a source book for the study of traditional Chinese fiction criticism from the late sixteenth to the early twentieth centuries, presents translations of writings taken from the commentary editions of six of the most important novels of pre-modern China. These translations consist mainly of tu-fa, or "how-to-read" essays, which demonstrate sensitivity and depth of analysis both in the treatment of general problems concerning the reading of any work of fiction and in more focused discussions of particular compositional details in individual novels.

The translations were produced by pioneers in the study of this form of fiction criticism in the West: Shuen-fu Lin, Andrew H. Plaks, David T. Roy, John C. Y. Wang, and Anthony C. Yu. Four introductory essays by Andrew H. Plaks and the editor address the historical background for this type of criticism, its early development, its formal features, recurrent terminology, and major interpretive strategies. A goal of this volume is to aid in the rediscovery of this traditional Chinese poetics of fiction and help eliminate some of the distortions encountered in the past by the imposition of Western theories of fiction on Chinese novels.

Originally published in 1990.

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.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title page, Copyright
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-viii
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  1. List of Abbreviations
  2. pp. ix-xii
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  1. Editor's Preface
  2. pp. xiii-xvii
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  1. I. Traditional Chinese Fiction Criticism
  2. pp. 3-123
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  1. II. Chin Sheng-T'an on How to Read the Shui-hu chuan (The Water Margin)
  2. pp. 124-145
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  1. III. Mao Tsung-Kang on How to Read the San-kuo yen-i (The Romance of the Three Kingdoms)
  2. pp. 146-195
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  1. IV. Chang Chu-P'o on How to Read the Chin P'ing Mei (The Plum in the Golden Vase)
  2. pp. 196-243
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  1. V. The Wo-Hsien Ts'ao-T'ang Commentary on the Ju-lin wai-shih (The Scholars)
  2. pp. 244-294
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  1. VI. Liu I-Ming on How to Read the Hsi-yu chi (The Journey to the West)
  2. pp. 295-315
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  1. VII. Chang Hsin-Chih on How to Read the Hung-lou meng (Dream of the Red Chamber)
  2. pp. 316-340
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  1. Appendix 1: Finding List of Terminology Used by Chinese Fiction Critics
  2. pp. 341-355
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  1. Appendix 2: The Authenticity of the Li Chih Commentaries on the Shui-hu chuan and Other Novels Treated in This Volume
  2. pp. 356-363
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  1. Appendix 3 : Conversion Table from Wade-Giles to Pinyin Romanization of Chinese
  2. p. 364
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  1. Bibliographical Material
  2. pp. 365-487
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  1. List of Contributors
  2. pp. 488-490
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 491-534
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781400860470
MARC Record
OCLC
889252982
Pages
552
Launched on MUSE
2015-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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