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In: Critical Readings on Tang China

Abstract

This essay proposes that we extract Wang Bo from the retrospectively formulated context of the so-called “Four Elites of the Early Tang” and attempt instead to assess Wang Bo's poetry within other relevant contexts, foremost his own family tradition. By taking into consideration ideas and inspirations that Wang Bo drew from this tradition, an alternative approach is suggested to understanding the development of the “new decorum” in early Tang poetry that has long been attributed to Wang Bo. In so doing, this essay argues more generally for a different literary-historical narrative of the early Tang.

In: T'oung Pao
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