from Ancient China
of the Chinese literary works are based on the ancient wars;
heroic struggle of the great warriors, and the villainies
of evil spirits.
Translator: Moss Roberts
Foreign Language Press
the rhythms of Chinese history, the monumental tale Three
Kingdoms begins. As important for Chinese culture as the
Homeric epics have been for the West, this fourteenth-century
masterpiece continues to be loved and read throughout China
Three Kingdoms portrays a fateful moment at the end of the
Han Dynasty (206 B.C.-A.D. 220), when the future of the
Chinese empire lay in the balance. Fearing attacks by three
rebellious states, the emperor sent out an urgent appeal
for support. In response, three young men -- the aristocratic
Liu Xuande, the fugitive Lord Guan and the pig butcher Zhang
Fei -- met to swear eternal brotherhood and fealty to their
beleaguered country. Their vow set in motion the series
of events that ultimately resulted in the collapse of the
Han. Writing centuries later, Luo Guanzhong drew on, often-told
tales of this turbulent period to fashion a sophisticated
narrative of loyalty and treachery, triumph and defeat,
which came to epitomise all that was best and worst in the
life of his country.
in the Golden Vase
Translator: David Tod Roy
Princeton University Press
first masterful volume of a projected five-volume translation
of one of China's most important classical novels will be
its most complete rendition in English.
Originally published around 1618, this 100-chapter novel
unravels the greed and political and sexual exploits of
a Sung dynasty merchant. Infused with eroticism and high
irony, the story is often seen to be a microcosm of 17th-century
Chinese society. With its 40 period woodblock illustrations,
this book is essential in any collection of world literature.
The copious notes, scholarly and philosophical introduction,
60-page cast of characters, and commentary render it indispensable
for the scholar of Chinese literature as well.
of Red Mansions
Cao Xueqin & Gao E
Translator: Yang Xianyi
Foreign Language Press
celebrated Chinese classic novel is a masterpiece of realism
written in the middle of the-eighteenth century. Taking
the decline of several big families as its background and
drawing much from his own experiences, the author Cao Xueqin
focused on the tragic love between Jia Baoyu and Lin Daiyu.
Meantime he provides a panorama of the lives of people of
various levels in the degenerating empire. But he left the
work unfinished (or the last 40 chapters lost). Gao E (c.1738-c.1815)
completed the work some years later in much of Cao's spirit
and also put in his own revelation, which aroused protracted
controversy throughout centuries.
Exposing social evils, the book denounces the feudal system.
It stands out in the world literature ranking with Hamlet
and War and Peace.