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China: A History (Volume 1): From Neolithic Cultures through the Great Qing Empire, (10,000 BCE - 1799 CE) Paperback – March 15, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-1603842020 ISBN-10: 1603842020

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China: A History (Volume 1): From Neolithic Cultures through the Great Qing Empire, (10,000 BCE - 1799 CE) + Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 + Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 2: From 1600 Through the Twentieth Century (Introduction to Asian Civilizations)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 414 pages
  • Publisher: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc. (March 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603842020
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603842020
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #192,103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

A solid, clearly written and up-to-date account of China's dynastic history, taking note of recent research, and with attention to cultural developments and economic practice. An accessible read, even for first-comers to this highly complex subject; this is an excellent introduction to China that instructors will welcome and students will enjoy. --Michael Loewe, University Lecturer in Chinese Studies, University of Cambridge 1963-1990; Emeritus Fellow of Clare Hall.



Tanner has written an excellent text on Chinese history which offers a fine balance between the traditional and the modern. He also charts a good balance between studies of the elite, government, philosophy and diplomacy and, on the other hand, analyses of ordinary people, economic institutions, social patterns, and folk religion. The book provides a comprehensive view of Chinese culture, including developments in literature and the arts. A generous selection of illustrations facilitates comprehension of and pleasure in the visual arts. Finally, Professor Tanner's consideration of Western contact with China and the attendant problems and gains is judicious and informative. --Morris Rossabi, Distinguished Professor of History, City University of New York



. . . . Tanner writes attractively . . . . He tells many stories of villains and heroes, of tragedy and comedy, of high culture and coarse humour, of wealth and poverty, of feast and famine, of poignant suffering, all of which keep the reader's interest and indeed fascination. It is a heroic tale that he tells and he does this superbly, rejecting myths and misunderstandings that have beset Western views of a complex country. --G.R. Batho, The Historical Association Reviews

About the Author

Harold M. Tanner is Associate Professor of History at the University of North Texas.


More About the Author

Harold Tanner is a native of Princeton, New Jersey. As he grew up, he realised that he had absolutely no desire to have a normal life, job, or career. He received a valuable, but checkered (particularly in terms of grades) education at Friends World College on Long Island and at New England College in Henniker, New Hampshire and Arundel, U.K. During and after a sometimes bumpy academic career, he managed to hitchhike in Scotland and Europe, study in Nepal with the Experiment in International Learning, work on farms, factories, and an orchard, visit India and Thailand, begin learning Chinese, and travel for six months (in 1984) in China. As reality began to close in, he packed himself onto the Trans-Siberian express from Beijing to Moscow, went on to London, and began his studies of Chinese politics, law, and culture at the School of Oriental and African Studies. Nine years later, he had inexplicably spent several years in China, earned an M.A. from SOAS and a Ph.D. from Columbia University, and found a job teaching Chinese history at the University of North Texas. He is still there, and has compromised with normality enought to have a family, a dog, a house, and a stable income. But he still likes to travel. He is the author of two books and is working on two more.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By L. Z on February 11, 2010
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I've been doing some research on Chinese history and found Dr. Tanner's book extremely useful. The book is very well written and provides a very comprehensive historical account of China from the early empire to the current day. His book is based on extensive research and he has a very good understanding of Chinese literature and art. Tanner has also compiled a bibliography on Chinese history, which can be very useful if you want to do further research on the subject.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Wayne Joerding on December 17, 2013
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Just what I was looking for. A through but not arcane recounting of the history of China reflecting the latest scholarship but readable by the interested amateur. Rather better than the Fairbanks book, in my opinion.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Carlos Rodriguez V. on October 21, 2013
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Helps understand what we now call China as the multidimensional, millenary civilization/region it is & how that gradually evolved.

Offers a background to place various ideas the modern PRC & modern Han insist on, real or made-believe.

The text is intertwine wit occasional maps & images, right there on topic instead of in some appendage later in the book.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By L. Schneemann on March 10, 2014
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This book covers the history of China to about 1800. I'm not a big fan of reading history, but I wanted to know more about Chinese history, recognizing what a huge subject that is and how little I knew about it previously. This book was just what I was looking for. It covers the key people, the expanding/shrinking empires, major culture trends, and of course the history, at a deep enough level so it made sense, but not so deep that I got lost in it. It's somewhat confusing, but that's more do to the complexity of the subject matter and my ignorance than any fault of the book. I would recommend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Juel Thomsen on June 13, 2014
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Informative easily read first overview for an amateur like me! Can recommend for first time readers of China history. Just go ahead.
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By A. Jones on January 4, 2015
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Excellent, concise, recent history that takes the reader from the earliest times up to the present. Perfect for anyone who wants a comprehensive and well-written overview of Chinese history and civilization.
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By PSG on November 18, 2014
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Came away with a better appreciation the sweep of Chinese history. Many uncomfortable parallels with modern America and our destructive political infighting.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mark A. Fallows on July 21, 2013
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This is my first book about Chinese history. It pretty much covers everything from the stone age all the way up until the 1800's. I haven't finished it yet (about 85%) but I have already learned quite a bit about Chinese history and culture. It's a little difficult to follow everything however since there is just so much history, and the fact that its hard to remember Chinese names and locations (for me at least). I plan on purchasing the next book that continues from the 1800's to the present day after I'm done reading this book.
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