Announcing the Global South Asia Series and New Books in Asian Studies

The Association for Asian Studies heads to Chicago this week and we’ve got an exciting line-up of books to unveil there. We’ll also be promoting our new Global South Asia series. This series—edited by Padma Kaimal, Kalyanakrishnan (Shivi) Sivaramakrishnan, and Anand A. Yang—places primary focus on modern and contemporary periods, but also with interest in earlier eras, will draw on humanities and social sciences as well as interdisciplinary approaches to examine the ways in which South Asia is and has been global and shaping the world. Read more about the series here.

If you’re attending the meeting, stop by the University of Washington Press booth in the exhibit hall (#510) to peruse all our new books and to meet Executive Editor Lorri Hagman, Editor in Chief, Larin McLaughlin, and Exhibits, Advertising, and Direct Mail Manager, Katherine Tacke.

We feature a few of our new Asian studies titles here, but encourage you to check out additional Asian art history titles in a previous post and our program ad to see a complete listing of new and forthcoming books.

Chang’an 26 BCE: An Augustan Age in China
Edited by Michael Nylan and Griet Vankeerberghen

“A model of the way future research in the field should be done. All scholars who study early China, particularly those with an interest in the Han dynasty, will welcome this book as a major contribution to the field.”—Stephen W. Durrant, University of Oregon

Although thousands of studies document imperial Rome’s glory, until now no book-length work in a Western language has been devoted to Han Chang’an, the reign of Emperor Chengdi (whose accomplishments rival those of Augustus and Hadrian), or the city’s impressive library project (26-6 BCE), which ultimately produced the first state-sponsored versions of many of the classics and masterworks that we hold in our hands today.

Daughter of Good Fortune: A Twentieth-Century Chinese Peasant Memoir
By Chen Huiqin / With Shehong Chen / Introduction by Delia Davin

“Illustrates the immense changes rural people have experienced since the founding of the PRC through today. It really is a worthy sequel to the classic account of peasant life in pre-communist China, Daughter of Han.”—Jeremy Brown, author of City Versus Countryside in Mao’s China

Daughter of Good Fortune tells the story of Chen Huiqin and her family through the tumultuous 20th century in China. She witnessed the Japanese occupation during World War II, the Communist Revolution in 1949 and its ensuing Land Reform, the Great Leap Forward, the Cultural Revolution, and the Reform Era. Chen was born into a subsistence farming family, became a factory worker, and lived through her village’s relocation to make way for economic development. Her family’s story of urbanization is representative of hundreds of millions of rural Chinese.

Literati Storytelling in Late Medieval China
By Manling Luo

“A book of startling originality, which studies an area of late medieval Chinese culture that has been scanted for too long . . . one of the most enjoyable and enlightening books I have read in years. It will reshape much of the received picture of late medieval literature and history.”—Paul W. Kroll, University of Colorado

Scholar-officials of late medieval China were not only enthusiastic in amateur storytelling, but also showed unprecedented interest in recording stories on different aspects of literati life. These stories appeared in diverse forms, including narrative poems, “tales of the marvelous,” “records of the strange,” historical miscellanies, and transformation texts. Through storytelling, literati explored their own changing place in a society that was making its final transition from hereditary aristocracy to a meritocracy ostensibly open to all. Literati Storytelling shows how these writings offer crucial insights into the reconfiguration of the Chinese elite, which monopolized literacy, social prestige, and political participation in imperial China.

Educating the Chinese Individual: Life in a Rural Boarding School
By Mette Halskov Hansen

“An outstanding and original contribution to the anthropology of education and a penetrating and vivid analytical picture of how contemporary Chinese society is changing and why.”—Peter Cave, University of Manchester

In 21st-century China, socialist educational traditions have given way to practices that increasingly emphasize the individual. This volume investigates that trend, drawing on fieldwork in a rural high school in Zhejiang where students, teachers, and officials of different generations, genders, and social backgrounds form what is essentially a miniature version of Chinese society. Hansen paints a complex picture of the emerging “neo-socialist” educational system and shows how individualization of students both challenges and reinforces state control of society.