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Recent images of the Vietnamese as a pyjama-clad peasantry, suffering, inflicting or warding off the dolours of modernity, will be brought to proportion by this saga of a quite different, rich, sophisticated and multifaceted culture, derivative in its special way from the classical traditions of China. A central tradition, that of self-sacrifice for the sake of one's kin, launches a romantic girl of good family into an epic of dissolution, intrigues and refined cruelty, whose agents are an array of fascinating and memorable characters, however reprehensible their morality. Her survival, despite each vicissitude, changes the heroine in unexpected ways (and possibly not merely surprising to Western readers). As one picaresque episode follows another we are treated to observations by Nguyen Du - expressed directly or with total credibility via his protagonists - which reveal his distinctive intellect: ironic, philosophical, incisive of human nature. Dedicated to a portrayal of bygone Sino-Vietnamese times and foundations, his is a voice that can still speak to us from those seemingly exclusive distances.
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Keith W. Taylor is Professor of Vietnamese Studies at Cornell University. He is the author of A History of the Vietnamese.
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Book Description University of Hawaii Press, 2005. Condition: Good. A+ Customer service! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Book is in Used-Good condition. Pages and cover are clean and intact. Used items may not include supplementary materials such as CDs or access codes. May show signs of minor shelf wear and contain limited notes and highlighting. Seller Inventory # 1740761278-2-4
Book Description University of Hawaii Press, 2005. Paperback. Condition: Used: Good. Seller Inventory # SONG1740761278
Book Description Pandanus Books, Australia, 2004. Paperback. Condition: As New. 169 pp. Seller Inventory # 28332
Book Description Pandanus Books., Canberra., 2004. Translated by Vladislav Zhukov. xii + 168pp, paperback. "Nguyen Du was a Vietnamese official displaced in a dynastic shift and sent into provincial exile in the service of his new overlord. The epic poem, Kim Vân Kieu, was his most notable work during this period. This saga of a rich, sophisticated and multifaceted culture - derivative in its special way from the classical traditions of China - launches a romantic girl of good family, Kieu, into an epic of dissolution, intrigues and refined cruelty. As one picaresque episode follows another, it becomes clear that the saga of Kieu's wanderings and travails is also Nguyen Du's lament of the overthrow of the ruling house of his youth and the loss of his former state. While dedicated to its portrayal of bygone Sino-Vietnamese times, the incisive intellectual, moral and social commentary of the Kim Van Kieu still speaks to the reader across these cultural and historical distances." Publisher's description. Seller Inventory # 78801