China Cyril Birch Scenes for Mandarins

ISBN 13: 9780231102636

Scenes for Mandarins

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9780231102636: Scenes for Mandarins

Ming drama represents the classical Chinese theater at its most mature and exquisite. Between 1368 and 1644, more than four hundred playwrights produced over l,500 plays, ranging from one-act skits to massive, operatic works with fifty scenes or more. As a performing art, Ming theater - with its polished singing, enchanting music, fantastic plotting, and intricate choreography - has never been surpassed.
In China, well-known Ming plays are common cultural reference points to this day, and favorite scenes still form staples of the classical repertoire. But although a handful of plays have been translated in their entirety, until now there has been no general critical introduction to the subject available to readers in English.
Scenes for Mandarins fills this need, surrounding translated highlights from six of the best-loved plays of the Ming period with lively, entertaining commentary on each play. The narrative of pioneer Ming scholar Cyril Birch provides the context necessary to help Western readers grasp the scope of a genre that spanned the great diversity of Chinese society - from the popular to the elite; from the poor, arid northern regions to the lush gentility of the south.

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Book Description:

The first introduction to the classical Chinese theater of Ming drama contains highlights from six of the best plays of the period and lively commentary on each, providing the context necessary for Western readers to grasp the scope of the genre.

About the Author:

Cyril Birch is professor emeritus in the Department of East Asian Languages at the University of California at Berkeley. Among the many books he has written, translated, and edited are Stories from a Ming Collection (1968), Studies in Chinese Literary Genres, The Peony Pavilionand, with Donald Keene, Anthology of Chinese Literature (1987).

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Book Description Columbia University Press. Book Condition: New. The first introduction to the classical Chinese theater of Ming drama contains highlights from six of the best plays of the period and lively commentary on each, providing the context necessary for Western readers to grasp the scope of the genre. Series: Translations from the Asian Classics. Num Pages: 262 pages, 10 b&w illustrations. BIC Classification: 1FPC; 2AB; 3H; 3JB; 3JD; AN; DD; DSBB; DSBD; DSG. Category: (P) Professional & Vocational. Dimension: 228 x 152 x 15. Weight in Grams: 363. . 1999. Paperback. . . . . Bookseller Inventory # KEX0227641

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Birch, Cyril
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Book Description Columbia University Press, 1999. Book Condition: New. The first introduction to the classical Chinese theater of Ming drama contains highlights from six of the best plays of the period and lively commentary on each, providing the context necessary for Western readers to grasp the scope of the genre. Series: Translations from the Asian Classics. Num Pages: 262 pages, 10 b&w illustrations. BIC Classification: 1FPC; 2AB; 3H; 3JB; 3JD; AN; DD; DSBB; DSBD; DSG. Category: (P) Professional & Vocational. Dimension: 228 x 152 x 15. Weight in Grams: 363. . 1999. Paperback. . . . . Bookseller Inventory # KEX0227641

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