Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Herodotus and Sima Qian: The First Great Historians of Greece and China: A Brief History with Documents” as Want to Read:
Herodotus and Sima Qian: The First Great Historians of Greece and China: A Brief History with Documents
In this accessible volume, Thomas R. Martin compares the writings of Herodotus in ancient Greece with those of Sima Qian in ancient China to demonstrate the hallmarks of early history writing. While these authors lived in different centuries and were not aware of each other’s works, Martin shows the similar struggles that each grappled with in preparing their historical ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published September 8th 2009 by Bedford/St. Martin's
(first published 2009)
To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
I came to this much more interested in Sima Qian than Herodotus. Hence, I was very surprised while reading their excerpts that the style and tone of both historians were actually quite similar; content-wise, the basis for comparison was much stronger than I'd expected. In the introduction, Martin pinpoints their importance on the investigative nature of their writing--away from poetry and myth towards a more rational documentation of events--which paved the way for future historians of ...more
May 17, 2015 Ed Callahan rated it it was amazing
The "discipline" or "practice" of writing history has a long, involved, and at times controversial legacy. Martin examines two ancient historians, Herodotus and Sima Qian. While most western readers will have at least a passing familiarity with Herodotus, Sima Qian is more obscure, at least to western audiences. Nevertheless, Martin demonstrates that both of these pioneers in historical writing did much to develop historical writing. It is more than a simple chronology and recounting of past ...more