The original Chinese edition of this book under the title Chinese Civilization: A Source Book《中國文化導讀》 was first published by City University of Hong Kong in 1999 and since then it has been used as the main reference book for students taking the Chinese Civilization courses.
A much-refined second edition was published in 2002 and in January 2007 a simplified Chinese-character version was published in Beijing, opening the door for a wider audience to appreciate the treasures of Chinese culture.
Our main aim throughout has been to allow young people to feast on the ancient wisdom of our forefathers by learning about the pantheon of Chinese civilization. It has taken more than five years to prepare the second edition of this book, upon which this English version is based. I am grateful that I was able to spearhead this project. However, the main credit goes to the excellent authors and editors.
My colleagues and I believe great civilizations belong not only to their direct descendants but to all the people of the world, and we hope this book will be enjoyed by everyone with a general appreciation of Chinese culture as well as by university students in need of a thorough reference book for university-level general education courses.
The team behind this project has noted that great civilizations such as those from China, India and the Islamic world have played a rather muted role on the academic stage in the West. This is partly due to language barriers but also to a historical mindset. It is our wish, then, that by opening the door to an English-language readership, this book can help to redress this imbalance. French, Spanish and other editions are also being planned.
I would like to thank the scholars who have worked so hard to translate this book into English and those who have helped to match its contents to the needs of the English-language readers.
Last but not least, I would like to thank my colleagues at City University of Hong Kong and other institutions around the world who have made possible this publication.
H K Chang
President and University Professor
City University of Hong Kong
China: Five Thousand Years of History and Civilization
This richly illustrated chronicle of Chinese civilization furnishes general readers and scholars alike with an authoritative overview of Chinese history, art and culture, from the pre-historic era to the early twentieth century, touching upon recurring themes and developments and synthesizing more than five thousand years of evolution and transition.
Written with precision and flair by a host of leading academics from Beijing and Hong Kong, this single volume is a welcome addition to the study of world civilizations, a broad yet detailed chronological sweep through time. Every aspect of Chinese civilization is explained, interpreted, contextualized and brought to life with well-balanced commentary and photographic documentation.
The result is a fascinating distillation of the past, an indispensable guide that renders the ancient past relevant to China today and to the rest of the world. Students of Chinese civilization will appreciate the detail of the research while lay readers, from business travelers to those interested in the general development of China, will return again and again to lean more about one of the world’s great stories, CHINA: Five Thousand Years of History and Civilization.
Apr 1, 2007
142 x 210 mm
The original Chinese edition of this book under the title Chinese Civilization: A Source Book《中國文化導讀》 was first published by City University of Hong Kong in 1999 and since then it has been used as the main reference book for students taking the Chinese Ci
- The Prehistoric Society of China
- Ancient China
- China from the Qin Dynasty to the Tang Dynasty
- China During the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties
- The Art of Ancient China
- The Chinese Language and Chinese Characters
- The Book Of Changes
- The Book of Poetry
- The Chuci Poetry
- The Confucian School in the Pre-Qin Period
- The Taoist School in the Pre-Qin Period
- The Legalist School in the Pre-Qin Period
- Sunzi—The Art of War
- The Records of the Historian and The History of the Former Han Dynasty
- Science in the Han Dynasty
- Metaphysics During the Wei and Jin Dynasties
- The Emergence and Development of the Taoist Religion
- Chinese Buddhism and Zen
- The Silk Road
- The Shi-Poetry of the Tang Dynasty
- Ancient Music and Dance
- The Art of Sculpture
- The Art of Calligraphy
- Schools and Imperial Civil Service Examinations
- The Development of the Four Great Inventions in the Song Dynasty
- Chinese Porcelain and the Maritime Transportation and Trade
- Neo-Confucianism in the Song and Ming Dynasties
- The Ci-Poetry of the Song Dynasty
- The Yuan Qu-Poetry
- The Introduction of Christianity and Islam into China and the Cultural Exchange
- Novels of the Ming and Qing Dynasties
- Chinese Ink-wash Painting
- The Art of Chinese Gardening
- Kunqu Opera and Beijing Opera