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China: A New History by John King Fairbank
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China: A New History (1992)

by John King Fairbank

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
575728,633 (3.95)18
John King Fairbank was the West's doyen on China, and this book is the full and final expression of his lifelong engagement with this vast ancient civilization. It remains a masterwork without parallel. The distinguished historian Merle Goldman brings the book up to date, covering reforms in the post-Mao period through the early years of the twenty-first century, including the leadership of Hu Jintao. She also provides an epilogue discussing the changes in contemporary China that will shape the nation in the years to come.… (more)

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» See also 18 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Excellent summary of China. I liked how it doesn't always go chronologically, but walks through different aspects of Chinese society and history so you can see it as a whole. ( )
  richardSprague | Mar 22, 2020 |
I'm only one chapter in, but I like the author's approach. He is reputed to be the go-to scholar for a one-volume China history. He is even-handed and includes all of the classic forces that shape human development: geographic, cultural, economic. political, and religious determinants, etc. He writes clearly, and well, and my hard-bound copy he good maps. Yes!
  Pieter_Cramerus | Nov 22, 2019 |
A deep, thorough, expansive general history of China. I'm sure I missed a lot on my first read through. ( )
  alexanme | Dec 9, 2018 |
Quintessential book of the history of the Chinese people and culture. Written without the prejudice born during the Red Scare. Factual and seemingly unbiased. Wonderful read. ( )
  JVioland | Jul 14, 2014 |
This splendid general history of China is an authoritative guide through millennia, yet it also includes a great amount of material on recent Chinese history, especially in the chapters added by Merle Goldman. The late professor Fairbank is our guide most of the way, and his easy style makes for delightful reading.
The book addresses a number of continuing themes, such as the contrast between state and family, between urban and rural, between ruling elite and the masses. It devotes considerable time to the development and evolution of Confucian thought and the way that philosophical system influenced the government and culture of China. Fairbank also spends some time tracing the development of Mao thought. In addition, the author eases the way for the Westerner by comparing developments in China with similar developments in European history.
Two very useful features in this book: 1.) every so often Fairbank will pause to survey areas that should receive further scholarly research; 2.) an extensive guide to further reading for any subject that the reader might find of interest. All in all, this book is a wonderful narrative history and a worthy introduction to an important topic. ( )
1 vote barlow304 | May 15, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
John King Fairbankprimary authorall editionscalculated
Goldman, MerleContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Modern China's political journalism was generally polemical, aiming to criticize and advocate, not primarily to inform the public as to facts.
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