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The Song Dynasty Making of China’s Greatest Poet
Author:
Irreducible to conventional labels usually applied to him, the Tang poet Du Fu (712–770) both defined and was defined by the literary, intellectual, and socio-political cultures of the Song dynasty (960–1279).
Jue Chen not only argues in his work that Du Fu was constructed according to particular literary and intellectual agendas of Song literati but also that conventional labels applied to Du Fu do not accurately represent this construction campaign. He also discusses how Du Fu’s image as the greatest poet sheds unique light on issues that can deepen our understanding of the subtleties in the poetic culture of Song China.
Editor / Translator:
Contrary to the usual sympathetic image of Kang Youwei found in historical studies, The Big Cheat offers a starkly negative portrayal of Kang. Its author, Huang Shizhong, a late Qing revolutionary and prolific author of over 20 novels, depicts Kang as a lifelong master fraud. His attack on Kang sheds light on the reform-revolution divide featured in every narrative about the rise of modern China.

Huang’s novel stands as a period testimony to the political and ideological struggles for China’s future during the last years of the Qing dynasty before it fell in 1912. This is the first English language edition of the novel, translated by Luke S. K. Kwong, who offers an extensive introduction contextualizing Huang's novel in historical perspective.