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Confucian Rituals and Chinese Villagers

Ritual Change and Social Transformation in a Southeastern Chinese Community, 1368-1949

Series:

Yonghua Liu

In Confucian Rituals and Chinese Villagers, Yonghua Liu presents a detailed study of how a southeastern Chinese community experienced and responded to the process whereby Confucian rituals - previously thought unfit for practice by commoners - were adopted in the Chinese countryside and became an integral part of village culture, from the mid fourteenth to mid twentieth centuries.

The book examines the important but understudied ritual specialists, masters of rites ( lisheng), and their ritual handbooks while showing their crucial role in the ritual life of Chinese villagers. This discussion of lisheng and their rituals deepens our understanding of the ritual aspect of popular Confucianism and sheds new light on social and cultural transformations in late imperial China.

Inheritance within Rupture

Culture and Scholarship in Early Twentieth Century China

Series:

Zhitian Luo

Edited by Lane Harris and Chun Mei

In Inheritance within Rupture, Luo Zhitian brings together ten essays to explore the themes of change and continuity, rupture and inheritance from the late Qing through the early Republic (1890s-1940s). Rejecting binaries such as tradition/modernity, conservative/liberal, Luo blurs the divisions between intellectual opponents and clarifies the divergences between scholarly friends. Centering these discussions around some of the most famous intellectual debates in the modern period, Luo challenges our understanding of ideological positions, political affiliation, and scholarly identity in early twentieth-century China. By focusing on the influence of cultural inheritance within the rupture of modernity, we come to understand those concerns shared by all Chinese in their own times and in the present.

From Yuan to Modern China and Mongolia

The Writings of Morris Rossabi

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Morris Rossabi

This wide-ranging work, consisting of selected essays of Morris Rossabi, reflects the diverse interests of a leading scholar of China and Inner Asia. It encompasses the eras from the thirteenth century to the present, territories stretching from China to Mongolia to Central Asia and to the Middle East, and religions from Islam to Nestorian Christianity to Judaism and Confucianism in East, Central, and West Asia.

Rossabi first challenged the conventional wisdom concerning traditional Chinese foreign relations by showing the pragmatism of Chinese officials who were not bound by Confucian strictures and stereotypes about foreigners and were actually knowledgeable about neighboring regions.

His studies of the territories surrounding China led to the discovery of a major omission in historical writing—the lack of a biography of Khubilai Khan, one of the most renowned rulers in Eurasian history. His biography of Khubilai resulted in further studies of the Mongolian legacy on global history and of the significant role of women in the Mongolian empire. His repeated travels in Mongolia, in turn, stimulated an interest in modern Mongolia, especially the turbulence following the turbulence after the collapse of socialism in 1990, a subject he writes about in this book.

The need for greater public knowledge and awareness of China, Mongolia, Central Asia, the Silk Roads, and Islam in Asia prompted Rossabi to write general, occasionally pedagogical, articles about these topics for a wider audience.

Everyday Life in Joseon-Era Korea

Economy and Society

The Organization of Korean Historians

Edited by Michael D. Shin

Winner of the 2014 Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award

Everyday Life in Joseon-Era Korea shows how the momentous changes of the time transformed the lives of the common people. In twenty-three concise chapters, the book covers topics ranging from agriculture, commerce, and mining to education, marriage, and food culture. It examines how both the spread of Neo-Confucianism in the early Joseon period and its decline from the seventeenth century impacted economic and social life.

The book also demonstrates that much of what is thought of as ancient Korean tradition actually developed in the Joseon period. Chapters in this book discuss how customs such as ancestor worship, the use of genealogies, and foods such as kimchi all originated or became widespread in this era.

Contributors: Kim Kuentae, Yeom Jeong Sup, Kim Sung Woo, Lee Hun-Chang, Lee Uk, Yoo Pil Jo, Kim Kyung-ran, Kim Eui-Hwan, Oh Soo-chang, Ko Dong-Hwan, Kwon Nae-Hyun, Lee Hae Jun, Jung Jin Young, Kwon Ki-jung, Han Sang Kwon, Kwon Soon-Hyung, Jang Dong-Pyo, Seo-Tae-Won, Sim Jae-woo, Chung Yeon-sik, O Jong-rok, Hong Soon Min. This volume was co-translated by Edward Park and Michael D. Shin.

The Spirit of Korean Law

Korean Legal History in Context

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Edited by Marie Kim

This is the first book on Korean legal history in English written by a group of leading scholars from around the world. The chapters set forth the developments of Korean law from the Chosŏn to colonial and modern periods through the examination of codified laws, legal theories and practices, and jurisprudence. The contributors’ shared premise is that the evolution of Korean law can be best understood when viewed in terms of its interactions with outside laws. Each chapter integrates literature in Korean, Japanese, Chinese, and Western languages into comprehensive analyses to make up-to-date research available to readers both inside and outside Korea. This volume provides a solid framework from which to approach Korean legal history in the perspective of comparative legal traditions.

Series:

George L. Israel

In Doing Good and Ridding Evil in Ming China: The Political Career of Wang Yangming, George Israel offers an account of this influential Neo-Confucian philosopher’s official career and military campaigns. While his contribution to China’s intellectual history and the outlines of his political life are well known, the relation between his thought and what he did in his capacity as a Ming official has been given less attention.
Prior writing on Wang Yangming has passed judgment on his ideas by either idealizing or condemning him for how he treated those he was assigned to govern. Through a detailed reconstruction of his career in the context of issues of empire, ethnicity, and violence, George Israel demonstrates that the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

Series:

Kenneth M. Wells

This outline of Korea’s civilisation is a cultural history that examines the ways the Korean people over the past two millennia understood the world and viewed their place in society. In the traditional era, the interaction between several broad religious and philosophical traditions and social institutions, state interests and, at times, external pressures, provides the framework of the story. In the modern era, the chief concern is with the rapid and momentous cultural changes that have occurred over the past one and a half centuries in the idea and spread of education, the rise in influence of students, the development of mass culture, the redefinition of gender, and the continuing importance of religion.

An Intellectual History of China, Volume One

Knowledge, Thought, and Belief before the Seventh Century CE

Series:

Zhaoguang Ge

Winner of the 2014 Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award
In An Intellectual History of China, Professor Ge Zhaoguang presents a history of traditional Chinese knowledge, thought and belief to the late six century CE with a new approach offering a new perspective. It appropriates a wide range of source materials and emphasizes the necessity of understanding ideas and thought in their proper historical contexts. Its analytical narrative focuses on the dialectical interaction between historical background and intellectual thought. While discussing the complex dynamics of interaction among the intellectual thought of elite Chinese scholars, their historical conditions, their canonical texts and the “worlds of general knowledge, thought and belief,” it also illuminates the significance of key issues such as the formation of the Chinese world order and its underlying value system, the origins of Chinese cultural identity and foreign influences.