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Author: Xiaoping Wang
Combining anatomies of textual examples with broader contextual considerations related with the social, political and economic developments of post-Mao China, Xiaoping Wang intends to explore newly emerging social and cultural trends in contemporary China, and find the truth content of Chinese society and culture in the age of global capitalism.
Through in-depth textual analyses covering a variety of media, ranging from fiction, poetry, film to theoretical works as well as cultural phenomena which mirror social and cultural occurrences and reflect the present ideological proclivities of the Chinese society, this study offers timely interpretations of China in the age of globalization, its political inclinations, social fashions and cultural tendencies, and provides thought-provoking messages of China’s socio-economic and political reality.
Author: Samarpita Mitra
In Periodicals, Readers and the Making of a Modern Literary Culture: Bengal at the Turn of the Twentieth Century Samarpita Mitra studies literary periodicals as a particular print form, and reveals how their production and circulation were critical to the formation of a Bengali public sphere during the turn of the twentieth century. Given its polyphonic nature, capacity for sustaining debates and adaptability by readers with diverse reading competencies, periodicals became the preferred means for dispensing modern education and entertainment through the vernacular. The book interrogates some of the defining debates that shaped readers’ perspectives on critical social issues and explains how literary culture was envisioned as an indicator of the emergent nation. Finally it looks at the Bengali-Muslim and women’s periodicals and their readerships and argues that the presence of multiple literary voices make it impossible to speak of Bengali literary culture in any singular terms.
Global Perspectives on Biography in Public Cultures and Societies
Internationally acclaimed biographies are almost always written by British or American biographers. But what is the state of the art of biography in other parts of the world? Introduced by Richard Holmes, the volume Different Lives offers a global perspective: seventeen scholars vividly describe the biographical tradition in their countries of interest. They show how biography functions as a public genre, featuring specific societal issues and opinion-making. Indeed, the volume aims to answer the question: how can biography contribute to a better understanding of differences between societies and cultures? Special attention is given to the US, China and the Netherlands. Other contributions are on Australia, Belgium, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Iceland, Iran, Italy, New Zealand, Spain, and South Africa.

"This book represents a much needed breakdown of the history and current status of Biography Studies throughout the world. Any educator teaching a course in higher education that includes Biography Studies should definitely consider this as a major text for inclusion."
Billy Tooma, film maker and Assistant Professor, Wessex County College

"The rise of biography is the literary event of our time; Hamilton and Renders are its pioneer scholars, and their compelling primer is a must read."
Joanny Moulin, Institut Universitaire de France, on Nigel Hamilton and Hans Renders, in: The ABC of Modern Biography (2018)

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Author: Antony Goedhals
The Neo-Buddhist Writings of Lafcadio Hearn: Light from the East by Antony Goedhals offers radical rereadings of a misunderstood and undervalued Victorian writer. It reveals that at the metaphysical core of Lafcadio Hearn’s writings is a Buddhist vision as yet unappreciated by his critics and biographers. Beginning with the American writings and ending with the essay- and story-meditations of the Japanese period, the book demonstrates Hearn’s deeply personal and transcendently beautiful evocations of a Buddhist universe, and shows how these deconstruct and dissolve the categories of Western discourse and thinking about reality – to create a new language, a poetry of vastness, emptiness, and oneness that had not been heard before in English, or, indeed, in the West.
Chinese Utopian Fiction at the End of Empire, 1902–1910
In Hundred Days’ Literature, Lorenzo Andolfatto explores the landscape of early modern Chinese fiction through the lens of the utopian novel, casting new light on some of its most peculiar yet often overshadowed literary specimens. The wutuobang or lixiang xiaoshuo, by virtue of its ideally totalizing perspective, provides a one-of-a-kind critical tool for the understanding of late imperial China’s fragmented Zeitgeist. Building upon rigorous close reading and solid theoretical foundations, Hundred Days’ Literature offers the reader a transcultural critical itinerary that links Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward to Wu Jianren’s Xin Shitou ji via the writings of Liang Qichao, Chen Tianhua, Bihe Guanzhuren, and Lu Shi’e. The book also includes the first English translation of Cai Yuanpei’s short story “New Year’s Dream.”
An Insistence on Truth
Author: Mingyuan Hu
In Fou Lei: An Insistence on Truth, Mingyuan Hu thinks through the life and work of one of modern China’s most significant public intellectuals, investigating his Shanghai-Paris trajectory and his resistance against cultural barbarism. Using hitherto undiscovered archival documents, Hu presents the first study of Fou Lei’s youth, particularly his formative years in Europe (1928–1931), and analyses the critic-translator’s identity vis-à-vis intercultural friendships and political predicaments. Bringing together previously untranslated material in French and Chinese, Fou Lei paints a man in dark times searching for illumination through words, and invites the reader to reconsider questions, unresolved and unspoken, about his tragic end.

This volume was originally published in hardback 25 May 2017.
Author: Whitney Cox
Philology was everywhere and nowhere in classical South Asia. While its civilizations possessed remarkably sophisticated tools and methods of textual analysis, interpretation, and transmission, they lacked any sense of a common disciplinary or intellectual project uniting these; indeed they lacked a word for ‘philology’ altogether.

Arguing that such pseudepigraphical genres as the Sanskrit purāṇas and tantras incorporated modes of philological reading and writing, Cox demonstrates the ways in which the production of these works in turn motivated the invention of new kinds of śāstric scholarship. Combining close textual analysis with wider theoretical concerns, Cox traces this philological transformation in the works of the dramaturgist Śāradātanaya, the celebrated Vaiṣṇava poet-theologian Veṅkaṭanātha, and the maverick Śaiva mystic Maheśvarānanda.
Editor: Islam Dayeh
Philological Encounters is dedicated to the historical and philosophical critique of philology.

The journal welcomes global and comparative perspectives that integrate textual scholarship and the study of language from across the world. Alongside four issues a year, monographs and/ or collected volumes will occasionally be published as supplements to the journal in the book series Philological Encounters Monographs.

The journal is open to contributions in all fields studying the history of textual practices, hermeneutics and philology, philological controversies, and the intellectual and global history of writing, archiving, tradition-making and publishing. Neither confined to any discipline nor bound by any geographical or temporal limits, Philological Encounters takes as its point of departure the growing concern with the global significance of philology and the potential of historically conscious and politically critical philology to challenge exclusivist notions of the self and the canon. Philological Encounters welcomes innovative and critical contributions in the form of articles as well as review articles, usually of two or three related books, and preferably from different disciplines.

Philological Encounters is a publication of the research program Zukunftsphilologie ( Forum Transregionale Studien Berlin).

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