Your report (2 pages) should:
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1. Discuss the author’s overall approach. E.g. is it focused on: Providing a general overview of a topic? Offering a close reading and interpretation of one or more texts? Explaining particular terms or concepts necessary to understanding a text? Discussing historical or cultural contexts? Exploring or establishing a theoretical model? Comparing different texts or contexts?
2. Summarize the author’s main thesis (or argument), and the main ways in which s/he attempts to justify that thesis (this is not the same as summarizing everything discussed in the work).
3. Offer a critique of the author’s approach and argument. What are its strengths and weaknesses? How effectively has the author established her or his thesis? To what extent has s/he accounted for the most important considerations?
The material may be an article in a scholarly journal, a scholarly book, or a chapter from a scholarly book (U can pick in the examples i given below_)
Narrative and Fiction: general
Lu, Xun; trans. by Yang Hsien-yi and Gladys Yang, A brief history of Chinese fiction. Beijing: Foreign Languages Press, 1959. [translation of 魯迅《中國小說史略》, 1927?]
Gu, Ming Dong. Chinese theories of fiction: A non-Western narrative system. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2006.
Warring States-Han historical writing
Zuo zhuan, Guoyu
Wang, John C.Y. “Early Chinese narrative: the Tso-chuan as example.” In Andrew H. Plaks, ed., Chinese narrative: critical and theoretical essays (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1977), 3-20.
Schaberg, David. A Patterned Past: Form and Thought in Early Chinese Historiography. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Asia Center, 2001. [On Zuo zhuan and Guoyu]
Li, Wai-yee. The Readability of the Past in Early Chinese Historiography. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Asia Center, 2007. [On Zuo zhuan]
Durrant, Stephen W. The Cloudy Mirror: Tension and Conflict in the Writings of Sima Qian. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1995.
Hardy, Grant. “Form and Narrative in Ssu-ma Ch’ien’s Shih chi.” Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews (CLEAR), 14 (1992): 1-23.
Hardy, Grant. Worlds of bronze and bamboo: Sima Qian’s conquest history. New York: Columbia University Press, 1999.
Clark, Anthony E. Ban Gu’s history of early China. Amherst, N.Y.: Cambria Press, 2008.
Han-Six Dynasties: accounts of model lives
Kieschnick, John. The Eminent Monk: Buddhist Ideals in Medieval Chinese Hagiography. Honolulu: University of Hawai`i Press, 1997.
Berkowitz, Alan J. Patterns of disengagement: the practice and portrayal of reclusion in early medieval China. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2000.
Campany, Robert Ford. To Live as Long as Heaven and Earth: A Translation and Study of Ge Hong’s Traditions of Divine Transcendents. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002.
Knapp, Keith Nathaniel. Accounts of filial sons: Ru ideology in early medieval China. Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press, 2005.
Six Dynasties: writings on the strange
DeWoskin, Kenneth J. “The Six Dynasties chih-kuai and the birth of fiction.” In Andrew H. Plaks, ed., Chinese narrative: critical and theoretical essays (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1977), 21-52.
Campany, Robert Ford. Strange Writing: Anomaly Accounts in Early Medieval China. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1996.
Zhang, Zhenjun. Buddhism and tales of the supernatural in early medieval China. Leiden: Brill, 2014.
Six Dynasties: anecdotal literature
Mather, Richard B. A new account of tales of the world (2nd ed.) [Shishuo xinyu]. Ann Arbor: Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan, 2002. “Introduction,” viii-xxxv. [First edition: Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1976]
Qian, Nanxiu. Spirit and self in medieval China: The Shih-shuo hsin-yü and its legacy. Honolulu: University of Hawai`i Press, 2001.
Li, Wai-yee. “Shishuo xinyu and the Emergence of Aesthetic Self-Consciousness in the Chinese Tradition.” In Zong-qi Cai, ed., Chinese Aesthetics: The Ordering of Literature, the Arts, and the Universe in the Six Dynasties (Honolulu: University of Hawai`i Press, 2004), 237-276.
Tang: stories in classical prose
Nienhauser, William H., Jr. “Some preliminary remarks on fiction, the classical tradition and society in late Ninth-century China.” In Winston L.Y. Yang and Curtis P. Adkins, eds., Critical Essays on Chinese Fiction (Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, 1980), 1-16.
Adkins, Curtis P. “The Hero in T’ang ch’uan-ch’i tales.” In Winston L.Y. Yang and Curtis P. Adkins, eds., Critical Essays on Chinese Fiction(Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, 1980), 17-46.
Hsieh, Daniel. Love and Women in Early Chinese Fiction. Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press, 2008.
Allen, Sarah M. Shifting stories: history, gossip, and lore in narratives from Tang dynasty China. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Asia Center, 2014.
Luo, Manling. Literati storytelling in late medieval China. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2014
Tang: popular narratives (Dunhuang “transformation texts”)
Eoyang, Eugene. “A taste for apricots: approaches to Chinese fiction.” In Andrew H. Plaks, ed., Chinese narrative: critical and theoretical essays (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1977), 53-69.
Pai, Hua-wen; trans. by Victor H. Mair. “What is Pien-wen 變文?” Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies 44.2: 493-514.
Mair, Victor H. T’ang transformation texts: a study of the Buddhist contribution to the rise of vernacular fiction and drama in China. Cambridge, Mass.: Council on East Asian Studies, Harvard University, 1989.