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Die chinesische Welt. Die Geschichte Chinas von den Anfängen bis zur Jetztzeit.

3.43 of 5 stars 3.43  ·  rating details  ·  99 ratings  ·  17 reviews
When published in 1982, this translation of Professor Jacques Gernet's masterly survey of the history and culture of China was immediately welcomed by critics and readers. This revised and updated edition includes a detailed chronology that has been updated through 1993, a new bibliography, and an expanded index that includes Chinese characters.
Paperback, 714 pages
Published January 1st 1988 by Suhrkamp (first published 1972)
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Mkp
Gernet's coverage is very interesting and encompasses the full range of Chinese history. He is very much an appreciator of Chinese culture, but he has his own perspective which colors the disquisition. In particular, his Marxist sympathies are always in the background. Perhaps not surprisingly, he is highly dismissive of Taoist and Buddhist culture and feels that they diminished Chinese society. He also dismissed Confucius, although he seems to think that the later Confucian tradition (to which ...more
Helmut
6 Jahre pro Seite

Die Geschichte Chinas, einen Zeitraum von 4000 Jahren, beschrieben in knapp 600 Seiten - das ist ein enormes, mutiges Unterfangen. Grundsätzlich finde ich dieses Werk sehr gelungen, habe aber so meine Probleme mit Universalgeschichten. So richtig zum entspannten Lesen taugt der Band nicht wirklich, da sein Aufzählungscharakter dafür zu hinderlich ist, es kommt kein richtiger Lesefluss auf, besonders, da unterschiedliche Ebenen (wie die wirtschaftliche, geistige und politische) g
...more
John
I knew I only knew a little about China’s history, but reading these books made me realize I knew even less than I thought. I read the books in concert, alternating between them to cover the same time periods. Together they gave a broad view and reinforced what I was learning, one from the other.

Far and away the most interesting period for me was the 19th century. It is mindboggling how China fell from such a power to a third world country at the mercy of multiple foreign powers. So many small
...more
Steve
This is a considerable lump of volumes, somewhat dense and drier than a tin of birds custard. It is however interesting still for all that. From the earliest known history right up to Tienanmen Square in 1989 Gernet whizzes through it all. The version I have is the Folio Society printing of the Cambridge University Press 1996 revision. There are a couple of older versions 1973, and 1982 which have less in the final chapter. The final chapter discusses the end of the Mao Tsu-tung era and the star ...more
Hattie Cousins
It's no mean feat to condense 3000 years of civilisation into 700 or so pages, and Gernet provides a surprisingly comprehensive overview of the history of China. However, it begins to fail when he covers modern China, where the text loses its objectivity and he largely glosses over the failures of the Maoist era (he even called the Great Leap Forward, the resulting famine of which caused the loss of about 60 million lives, 'an extraordinarily bold experiment'). A dry read, but extremely useful f ...more
Douglas Hayes
In my ongoing quest to gain a general knowledge of China and its history I trudged my way through this exhaustively, comprehensive and scholastic tome. I'm sure the last sentence seems a criticism, when, in fact, I intend it as, well, a statement of fact. I found it full of them. Enough that I imagine that it would serve well as a graduate program text book.

For my purposes, it provided such a detailed look at the trees, I got completely lost in the forest, and sometime forgot I was in a forest -
...more
Jim Swike
Very good textbook, takes you from Confucius to Mao Tse Tung. Enjoy!
James
Though I do not doubt Gernet's scholarship, which in this book is wide-ranging and often in depth, the book suffers firstly from a sometimes over-specialisation on certain matters (such as devoting several pages to the intricacies of Tang dynasty horse-breeding) and a startling lack of work on post-1949 China. Obviously, there is the problem of age, but even so, to devote less than a page to post-Cultural Revolution events is poor writing. As for the English translation, to render all the origin ...more
Zhao Joseph

How can i read this book?
Lesley

so far...(ch 1-3)

throws a LOT of facts at you & the translators are guilty of mass circumlocution (every damn sentence). never the less...interesting

Notes of use:
Author uses wade-Giles (get out your converter)

It is best to understand the basic structure of ancient china prior to reading, not the layman structure of what is meant by "Chinese"

It gets easier to read as you move along, especially keeping in mind the above.
^^
This is an excellent reference book providing in-depth analysis and linkage between Chinese history and culture.

It is not, however, a good read - too dry and condensed.

Treat it like a detailed encyclopaedia; if you want an informative but smooth read, try Jonathan Spence's books.
André
Jan 17, 2012 André marked it as unfinished
Shelves: china
Some pictures and charts and tables are quite useful, but it's astonishingly difficult to read, although it isn't *in* Chinese at all. Indeed I didn't get past the first one or two chapters. Instead, I preferred Franke/Trauzettel's "Das chinesische Kaiserreich".
Daniel
Good survey of Chinese history. Includes some details on intellectual history besides the political and economic trends. The last few chapters on the 19th and 20th centuries are less well-written.
Gerald
Extrem trockenes und kaum lesbares wissenschaftliches Werk. Bestensfalls für Sinologen geeignet, die irgendein Datum oder einen Namen nachschlagen müssen.
Uptownbookwormnyc
doesn't read very smoothly; awkward disjointed structure & i could have done with more info & less focus on names.
carly
I shoved my nose in this book almost ever day for two semesters, but I don't think I retained a single word of it.
Karl Georg
Is what the title claims it to be: A history of China and her civilization, from the beginnings to 1990.
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Jacques Gernet is an eminent French sinologist of the second half of the 20th century. His best-known work is The Chinese Civilization, a 900 page summary of Chinese history and civilization which has been translated into many languages.

Gernet obtained a degree in classics at Algiers in 1942, then served in World War II from 1942-1945. In 1947 he received his degree in Chinese from the National Sc
...more
More about Jacques Gernet...
Daily Life in China on the Eve of the Mongol Invasion, 1250-1276 Buddhism in Chinese Society: An Economic History from the Fifth to the Tenth Centuries Le monde chinois tome 2 Le Monde Chinois 1 La Chine ancienne

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