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10 Reviews
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource!
This book gets the majority of its bulk from direct translations of actual Chinese texts, and as such it is an indespensible tool for any student interested in Chinese religions and philosohpies. There is very little input on the part of the editors and I, personally, was very thankful this. It can be dreadfully difficult trying to find sources that aren't mired in...
Published on April 8, 2005 by Amazon Customer

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6 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe the best you can get....
I wanted to love this -- I mean, it has everything there to love it: history, primary documents, and analysis by leading scholars on the subjects.

Unfortunately there were a few things that I found really disturbing. For example, the author spells "tao" as "dao" or he spells "Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching" as "Laozi's Daodejing" - furthermore, although I've never read...
Published on September 28, 2011 by BMR


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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource!, April 8, 2005
This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
This book gets the majority of its bulk from direct translations of actual Chinese texts, and as such it is an indespensible tool for any student interested in Chinese religions and philosohpies. There is very little input on the part of the editors and I, personally, was very thankful this. It can be dreadfully difficult trying to find sources that aren't mired in thousands of pages of theory and speculation, and sometimes a person just needs the root text! An awesome book.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely essential, July 3, 2003
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
I'll make this short...For anyone interested in Chinese history, literature, or culture, this volume is an absolutely essential collection of primary sources, and includes prefaces and explanations by China scholars. There is no one better than de Bary, and this new edition includes everything from the 1960 edition up through the Jiang Zemin era.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you want know China, Real Chinese, read it, May 22, 2013
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
I am a native Chinese and I am a political science major student in a relatively prestigious school. I have been knowing Chinese history for years, with living in China and study Chinese history in my high school. HOWEVER, this book is truly amazing and revealed many things and insights about my own cultural roots. A must read!
Highly recommended!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 stars, December 17, 2012
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
An amazing resource for Chinese history in a beautiful layout. I would definitely recommend this and the 2nd volume to anyone interested in diving into primary Chinese source material.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not bad for a textbook, July 23, 2011
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
Bought it for a college course and surprise (!) ended up reading it! It can be a bit dry of course, but its a pretty interesting read if you're into that kind of stuff. If you have no interest in history well then obviously this book is not for you.

Also it is HUGE. I definitely did not read the entire textbook. At whatever price you are paying for this book, the price per page is less than a penny. It weighs about 5 pounds and is fatter than a two cheeeseburgers stacked on top of each other.

Still, decent read, heavy, and if you can get it for under 10 dollars you are probably getting a good deal.
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5.0 out of 5 stars as described, March 30, 2014
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
The book is quite boring. I only got it because of a requirement for a Chinese history class. Full of ideologies from great Chinese philosophers.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chinese Religious Traditions, March 8, 2013
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
De Bary and colleagues have compiled useful original documents to illustrate the major trends and traditions in China over the milennia
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chinese Tradition, November 16, 2009
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
Bought this book for a course. Comprehensive - very detailed accounts of history and philosophy. The professor doesn't really "teach," so this book has been an invaluable resource.
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5 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I was not able to understand most of it, February 6, 2010
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
I think the book is excellent and it is exactly what is meant for. However, the Chinese historical sources are so far away from my mindset that I found it difficult and quite boring.

Try first the second volume first (it is more meant for non-historians or non-philosophers). In case you love it you can try the first one.
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6 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe the best you can get...., September 28, 2011
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This review is from: Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 (Paperback)
I wanted to love this -- I mean, it has everything there to love it: history, primary documents, and analysis by leading scholars on the subjects.

Unfortunately there were a few things that I found really disturbing. For example, the author spells "tao" as "dao" or he spells "Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching" as "Laozi's Daodejing" - furthermore, although I've never read the analects or the Xunzi or the Mencius before, etc... These are just minor gripes -- disturbing, however, knowing that if he spells these things differently he might spell everything else differently as well....

Furthermore, I have read the Tao Te Ching before and thought that (a) the excerpts here were poorly selected and (b) the translations were mediocre. I would not be surprised if the same held true for the other selections in the rest of the book.

Part of me wishes to say: Get this book and introduce yourself to these great traditions of thought!! It covers such a wide expanse of history and goes into surprising detail.

But another part of me wants to say: get the best translations of the primary documents and study these traditions individually.

I think, actually, the latter option would be far more rewarding. There's nothing worse than reading a poor selection of a poor translation and then thinking to yourself: this is terrible -- when really it is a work that, had you read a better selection and a better translation, you would have fallen in love with.
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Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1
Sources of Chinese Tradition, Vol. 1 by William Theodore De Bary (Paperback - July 1999)
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