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  • The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons (Hardcover)

The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons (Hardcover)

Translated and Annotated by Vincent Yu-chung Shih

English , 1982/01 The Chinese University of Hong Kong Press

Tags: Literature, Philosophy

229 x 152 mm , 620pp ISBN / ISSN : 978-962-201-271-4

  • US$52.00

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The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons by Liu Hsieh (c. 465-522) is the first literary critical work, dealing comprehensively the genres, subject-matter, forms and styles of all Chinese writings since the earliest time to the author's own period. It casts a critical review of the literary theories and critical opinions of the past. It stands alone in importance in that, apart from being a thorough history of literary criticism, it also points out with rare discernment the significant features in the development of each genre. It may as well serve as a general history of Chinese literature. The author, in his analysis of literary and rhetorical elements, in his discussion of the relation between talents and learning, content and form, feeling-idea and expression, exhibits an unusual sense of balance, with an eye ever on the unity of the whole of a literary piece. Catholic in learning, he brings before us a massive amount of past treasures; and to scholars in subsequent ages he serves as a guiding light in charting out the terrain of criticism. As a piece of literary writing, it shines forth among the works of his time. A product of his age, he is a past master in the current doubleharness style, a style so ornate that he originally sets out to check its advance and revitalise the classical style of grace and elegance. His own work captures the beauty of the current style without being encumbered by its rhetorical debris.

This new billingual edition of the Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons carries many revisions in the English translation and annotations of the Chinese classic. In Prof. Shih's view, the new version, with these significant improvements, makes obsolete his previous rendition of the same book published some years ago.


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