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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
16
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Showing 1-10 of 11 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 16 reviews
on April 29, 2015
This is a wonderful book with hard to find translations. If you want to deepen your understanding of China this is a great book.
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on July 22, 2015
Nice book!
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on March 8, 2013
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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on November 16, 2009
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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on February 6, 2010
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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on May 22, 2013
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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on February 20, 2016
the book content is great and detailed, yet it is not as new as I expected, still, I am really satisfied with the price and the quality!
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on July 23, 2011
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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on December 17, 2012
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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on September 28, 2011
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.
66 comments| 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse