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North Castle Books

China: A Macro History, Revised Edition
Authored by: Ray Huang

Cloth ISBN: 978-1-56324-730-9 Paper ISBN: 978-1-56324-731-6
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USD: $80.95 USD: $25.95
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Available to all countries
Information: 364pp. Illustrations, charts, bibliography, maps, index.
Publication Date: January 1997.  


Description: With the vision and attention to detail that were evident in his highly acclaimed 1587: A Year of No Significance, Ray Huang moves from micro to macro history in the stunning achievement, China: A Macro History, which takes a fresh look at at the full sweep of Chinese history from neolithic times to the present. Provocative, insightful, and displaying an extraordinary breadth of knowledge, Mr. Huang has written a highly readable account of the panorama of Chinese history that will challenge and fascinate scholar and layperson alike. In the words of the late Joseph Needham, "I have never enjoyed a read more than Ray Huang's history of China..." This revised edition updates the original with a new preface, additional illustrations in the facile hand of the author, and a more reader-friendly format. On the original edition...

"Ray Huang's China: A Macrohistory is a most clear, judicious and concise account of Chinese history from antiquity to the present...this study breathes new life into Chinese history, and the past and the present illuminate each other. This work is truly trail-blazing not merely as a text book but as an introduction to China for the general reader."

Ying-shih Y"u, Michael Henry Strater, University Professor, Princeton University; Member, Academia Sinica, Taipei

"He has beautifully succeeded, and his book--whose content is well balanced between the facts, their explanations, and their consequences, and which is very clearly written and accessible to the general reader as well as to the specialist--deserves to become a classic in the field of sinology."

Jacques Guillermaz, formerly Professor and Director, Research and Documentation Center, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Social, Paris

"What I admire perhaps most is that this book appeals alike to the scholar (to whom it gives much food for thought) and, because it reads so easily, to the interested layman." Herbert Franke, Professor Emeritus of Far Eastern Studies, University of M"unchen

"An impressive book. A serious work by a mature scholar." Derk Bodde, Professor Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania

"Huang's macro-history is most welcome. It builds a structure of novel interpretation and vivid anecdote on a solid base of original research and covers the whole sweep of Chinese history, making comparative references to Western history...a boldy opinionated, freshly written synthesis that will be read with pleasure and profit by all."

Library Journal

"Only 277 pages for this sparkling survey of Chinese history over the last several thousand years. Most convincing, lucid, a brilliant view of Chinese history."

The Book Reader

Selected Contents:

Preface to New Edition
1. Xi'an and the Loess Land
2. The Second Sage and the First Emperor
3. Soil, Wind, and Water
4. Behind the Terracotta Army
5. The First Empire: Establishing the Standard
6. Literati Turned Warlords
7. Prolonged Disunity
8. When Historical Components Sprawled Far and Wide
9. On the Road to Reunification
10. The Second Empire: A Breakthrough That Failed to Materialize
11. The Northern Song: A Daring Experiment
12. West Lake and the Southern Song
13. The Mongolian Interlude
14. The Ming: An introverted and Noncompetitive State
15. The Late Ming
16. The Role of the Manchus
17. 1800: A Point for Reflection
18. From the Opium War to the Self-Strengthening Movement
19. The "Hundred Days," the Republic, and May Fourth
20. Contemporary China and Its Place in the World
21. Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao
Observations at the Turn of the Century

Comment(s): " China: A Macro History has been widely praised as the best succinct history of China; a new edition of the work, supplemented by a new Preface, Conclusion, and Bibliographic Essay, is therefore most welcome. ... One may not agree with all of [Huang's] interpretive views, but one cannot overlook the power of his ideas and the challenge he offers to conventional thinking." -- F.W. Mote, Professor Emeritus, Princeton University

Review(s): "[Huang] presents his arguments clearly, with good sense and appropriate sensitivity for the Chinese tradition. And he backs his view by a splendid account of Chinese history from its earliest times. ... [His] summaries are effective and his opinions worth serious consideration by any scholar. ... This is history which is both professional and personal, to be enjoyed with profit by both students and general readers. It is also a powerful argument for a generous approach to the people of China and their government into the next century." -- The Asia-Pacific Magazine

"[Huang's] book was first published in 1988. It is a measure of its excellence that it is more apposite now than then. ... This book is a complete success." -- Pacific Affairs

"Well written and interesting. ... A reader ... can profit a great deal from reading this work." -- The China Quarterly

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