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Prefaces to fu compositions originated and developed during the Han Dynasty. Their beginnings can be traced to the Western Han when Sima Qian added brief introductions to Jia Yi’s fu in the Shiji. This marked the creation of the commentator’s preface. During the late Western and early Eastern Han, a transitional form of preface – in-between a commentator’s and an author’s preface – began to appear. Important examples can be found in Yang Xiong’s “Autobiography” and Huan Tan’s New Treatise where the authors commented on fu pieces they themselves had composed earlier in life. The use of author’s prefaces eventually became popular during the Eastern Han. In addition to instructing the reader on the background of a composition, Han fu prefaces possessed a variety of additional functions. They served to clarify the central themes and outline the main contents of a fu, display the author’s personal viewpoints, emotions, and literary talent and help attract potential readers. This shows an awareness of the reading experience of the recipients on the part of the authors. The basic characteristics of fu prefaces as a literary form can be described as richness of content, the use of diverse writing techniques as well as a versatility in literary style. Han fu prefaces additionally played a distinct role in the development of the literary genre of xiaopin wen.

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In: Journal of Chinese Humanities
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Inflation is always an important indicator to measure whether economy is stable and healthy. This paper provides a substantive survey of the research on the welfare cost of inflation, and uses the methods of consumer’s surplus and neo-classical general equilibrium models respectively to estimate the welfare cost of inflation in China. The results show that high inflation will cause huge welfare cost in China, so keeping low inflation is beneficial to the entire economic welfare of China.

In: Frontiers of Economics in China