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Subtitled: The Unofficial History of the World of the Literati, this classic novel, written in the Chinese vernacular and published around 1750, is Wu Ching-Tzu's account of many friends (and enemies), academics all, who struggle to cope with the burdens of a Confucian society and the difficulties of the Civil Service Exam. It's book that appeals in every era. Under Mao, t ...more
Paperback, 480 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by Silk Pagoda
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This 18th century Chinese classic (in Chinese, the Rulin Waishi) is a novel whose protagonist is, in effect, an institution, namely the civil service examination system. The novel's form perfectly suits its subject, passing the narrative from character to character, tracing the webs of association and patronage that constitute the class of the literati, or scholar-bureaucrats, as well as those on its fringes, who aspire to join it by passing the exams, deliberately spurn membership in it despite ...more