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Reading List for EAST2009

Classics of Chinese Literature and Thought, 2017/18
Dr Frances Weightman
Tutor information is taken from the Module Catalogue
EAST2009 Classics of Chinese Literature and Thought

Knight, Sabina, Chinese literature : a very short introduction (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012) (available online via the library website)


Idema, Wilt and Lloyd Haft, A Guide to Chinese Literature (Michigan Monographs in Chinese Studies) (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan, 1997)

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Essential reading (primary texts)

Confucius: The Analects, trans by Annping Chan, Penguin Classics (New York: Penguin Group, 2014) (this is the recommended edition but various translations are available)

AND, you will need to read carefully at least one of the primary texts below for your essay:-

Cao Xueqin , The Story of the Stone (5 vols, but worth it!), translated by David Hawkes and John Minford (Penguin Classics, 1973 ff)

Pu Songling, Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio translated and edited by John Minford (Penguin Classics) (London: Penguin, 2006)

Shi Nai’an, The Water Margin (translated by Sidney Shapiro) (3 vols) (Beijing: Foreign Languages Press, 2007)

Tang Xianzu, The Peony Pavilion (ed and trans by Cyril Birch, with introduction by Catherine Swatek) (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2002)

Wu Cheng’en, Journey to the west Any of the following translations are ok:-

W.J.F.Jenner (Beijing: Foreign Languages Press, 1982) (3 volumes)

Anthony C. Yu (4 vols) (revised edition, University of Chicago, 2012),

Arthur Waley’s Monkey (1 vol)Penguin classics (1961)

Alternatively, you can choose an anthology of Tang poetry (but please get it approved before you start working on your essay) or the following anthology of Yuan drama:-

Various authors, The Orphan of Zhao and other Yuan plays : the earliest known versions (ed and trans by Stephen H. West and Wilt Idema) (New York: Columbia University Press, 2014)

As further background reading the following large anthologies are highly recommended, if a little heavy (referring to the physical weight, not the content!):-

Owen, Stephen (ed and translator) An anthology of Chinese literature : beginnings to 1911 (New York: Norton, 1996)

Nienhauser, William H. (ed) The Indiana companion to traditional Chinese literature (2 vols) (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1986)

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Further primary texts which will be of interest:-

The book of Chuang Tzu , translated by Martin Palmer,Penguin Classics (New York: Penguin Group, 2006)

Mencius , translated by D.C.Lau, Penguin Classics (New York: Penguin Group, 2004)

Sources of Chinese Tradition (2 vols),edited by Wm T de Bary (New York: Columbia University Press, 1960)

A source book in Chinese philosophy , trans and ed by Wing-tsit Chan (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1969)

Secondary sources

Chou, Chih-P'ing Yüan Hung-tao and the Kung-an school , (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988)

Golding, Paul R., After Confucius : studies in early Chinese philosophy (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2005)

Graham, A.C., Disputers of the Tao : philosophical argument in ancient China (Chicago: Open Court Publishing,1989)

Mann, Susanand Cheng Yu-yin, Under Confucian eyes : writings on gender in Chinese history (California: University of California Press, 2001)

Waley, Arthur, Three Ways of Thought in Ancient China (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1939, rep 1982)

Yu Dan, Confucius from the heart : ancient wisdom for today's world , translated by Esther Tyldesley(London: MacMillan, 2009)


Primary texts

Li Po and Tu Fu : poems , translated by Arthur Cooper, Penguin Classics (New York: Penguin Group, 1973)

Chinese love poetry : new songs from a jade terrace : a Medieval anthology , translated by Anne Birrell,Penguin Classics (New York: Penguin Group, 1986)

Mountain home : the wilderness poetry of ancient China , translated by David Hinton (London, Anvil Press, 2007)

The new directions anthology of classical Chinese poetry , edited by Eliot Weinberger (trans by Williams, Pound, Rexroth, Snyder and Hinton) (London: Anvil Press, 2003)

The selected poems of Po Chü-I , introduced and trans by David Hinton (London: Anvil Press, 2006)

Women writers of traditional China : an anthology of poetry and criticism , edited by Kang-I Sun Chang and Haun Saussy (Stanford: Stanford Uni Press, 1999)

Poems of the late T'ang , trans by A. C. Graham,(New York:NYRB classics, 2008)

Secondary sources

Barnstone, Tony, and Chou Ping, The Anchor book of Chinese poetry (New York: Anchor Books, 2004)

Birrell, Anne Popular songs and ballads of Han China (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1993)

Cai Zongqi, How to read Chinese poetry : a guided anthology (New York: Columbia University Press, 2007)

Eoyang, Eugene Chen, The transparent eye : reflections on translation, Chinese literature, and comparative poetics (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1993)

Hawkes, David, A Little Primer of Tu Fu (Hong Kong: Chinese University Press, 2016)

James Y. Liu, The art of Chinese poetry , (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1966)

McCraw, Chinese lyricists of the seventeenth century (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1990)

Owen, Stephen, The poetry of the early T'ang (Yale, Yale University Press, 1977)

Owen, Stephen, The great age of Chinese poetry : the high Tang (Yale, Yale University Press, 1981)

Sun Chu-chin, Cecile, Pearl from the dragon's mouth : evocation of scene and feeling in Chinese poetry (Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, the University of Michigan, 1995)

Yu, Pauline, The reading of imagery in the Chinese poetic tradition (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1987)


Further primary texts (but so many possibilities not able to list them here -- go to the library and browse!)

Stories from a Ming collection, translated by Cyril Birch (New York: Grove Press, 1958)

Secondary sources

Barr, Allan, 'Disarming Intruders: Alien Women in Liaozhai zhiyi .' Harvard journal of Asiatic studies. 49 (1989): 501-517

Campany, Robert. 'Demons, Gods, and Pilgrims: The Demonology of the Hsi-yu Chi '. Chinese literature : essays, articles, reviews. , vol. 7, no. 1/ 2 (July 1985): 95-115

---. 'Cosmogony and Self-Cultivation: The Demonic and the Ethical in Two Chinese Novels.' Journal of religious ethics. , 14 (1986): 81-112.

Chang, Chu-shu and Shelley Hsueh-lun, Redefining history : ghosts, spirits, and human society in Pʻu Sung-ling's world, 1640-1715 (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1998)

Dudbridge, Glen, The Hsi-yu chi : a study of antecedents to the sixteenth-century Chinese novel (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1970)

Edwards, Louise, Men and women in Qing China : gender in the Red Chamber Dream (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2001)

Hanan, Patrick, The Chinese short story : studies in dating, authorship, and composition (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1983)

Hegel, Robert E., The novel in seventeenth-century China (New York: Columbia University Press, 1981)

Hung, Eva. ed. Paradoxes of traditional Chinese literature (Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, 1994)

Huntington, Rania, Alien kind : foxes and late imperial Chinese narrative (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2003)

Ge Liangyan, Out of the Margins , (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2001)

Jing Wang, The Story of Stone: Intertextuality, Ancient Chinese Stone Lore, and the Stone Symbolism in Dream of the Red Chamber, Water Margin, and The Journey to the West (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1992)

Kao, Karl S.Y., Classical Chinese tales of the supernatural and the fantastic : selections from the third to the tenth Century (Hong Kong: Joint Publishing, 1985)

Levy, Dore J., Ideal and actual in "The story of the stone" (New York: Columbia University Press, 1999)

Ma, Y.W, and Lau, Joseph S.M, Traditional Chinese stories : themes and variations (New York: Columbia University Press, 1978) (two volumes)

Tian Yuan Tan, and Santangelo, Paolo, Passion, romance, and Qing : the world of emotions and states of mind in Peony pavilion , (Leiden: Brill, 2015)

Widmer Ellen, The margins of utopia : Shui-hu hou-chuan and the literature of Ming loyalism, (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1987)

Weightman, Frances, The quest for the childlike in seventeenth-century Chinese fiction : fantasy, naivety, and folly (Lewiston, N.Y: Edwin Mellen Press, 2008)

Yu, Pauline, Ways with words : writing about reading texts from early China (Berkeley; London: University of California Press, 2000) (Chapter 6, on The Biography of Yingying )

Zeitlin, Judith T., Historian of strange : Pu Songling and the Chinese classical tale (Stanford, Ca.: Stanford University Press, 1993)

---. The phantom heroine : ghosts and gender in seventeenth-century Chinese literature. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 2007.


Further primary texts

K'ung Shang-jen, The Peach Blossom Fan ( trans by Chen Shih-hsiang and Harold Acton; intro by Judith Zeitlin ) (New York: NYRB, 2015)

Six Yüan plays , translated by Liu Jung-en,Penguin Classics (New York: Penguin Group, 1972)

Wang Shifu, The moon and the zither : The story of the western wing = [Xin kan qi miao quan xiang zhu shi Xi xiang ji] (ed and trans by Stephen H. West and Wilt Idema) (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1995)

Secondary sources (also note thatmost of the translations mentioned here have good critical introductions which are well worth reading)

Dolby, A.W.E, A History of Chinese Drama (London: Paul Elek,1976)

Mackerras, Colin, Chinese drama : a historical survey (Beijing: New World Press, 1990)

This list was last updated on 14/01/2016