Privacy is a basic concept in discussions on the concept of human rights. This first book on the (traditional) Chinese approach to the subject shows that concepts of privacy have been part of discourse in China from the earliest recorded times to the present, with varying contents, mechanisms, functions and values at different times and among different groups of people.
Individual chapters examine inscriptions on early bronzes, medical case histories in the Ming and Qing dynasties, fictional representations of privacy experiences, discussions on public and private virtue by Liang Qichao, the role (or absence) of privacy issues in letters in early imperial China, and the function and values of privacy, secrecy and seclusion in the correspondence between Lu Xun and Xu Guangping.
As the first treatment of Chinese concepts of privacy in any language, the book is interdiscipinary by nature and pays particular attention to the terminology and methodology of privacy studies.
Bonnie S. McDougall, Ph.D. (1970) in Sydney, is Professor of Chinese at the University of Edinburgh. Recent work includes
The Literature of China in the Twentieth Century, co-authored with Kam Louie (Columbia University Press, 1997) and
Love-Letters and Privacy in Modern China:The Intimate Lives of Lu Xun and Xu Guangping (Oxford University Press, 2002).
Anders Hansson, Ph.D. (1986), Harvard, teaches Chinese at the University of Edinburgh. His most recent work includes
Chinese Outcasts (Brill, 1996) and
Chinese Festivals (Kegan Paul).