Jonathan D. Spence
Birth date: August 11, 1936
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New Introduction, by Judith T. ZeitlinPreface, by Harold ActonIntroduction, by Cyril BirchPrincipal Characters--The Peach Blossom Fan
Another Judkins rec for Chinese history surveys. I know this book; it gets a lot of ups.
In Return to Dragon Mountain Jonathan Spence explores in detail the life and times of the privileged class in China just before and after the Manchu invasion in 1644 and the subsequent collapse of the Ming dynasty. And he does so using the extensive writings of a participant, one Zhang Dai, a prol...
Interesting in some points, but I find the writing style and tone to be rather dull.
For starters, in 1644 a Jesuit missionary named Adman Schall was made director of the Chinese Bureau of Astronomy (appointed by the Emperor's grand secretary) and this was no ordinary appointment. Before this moment China had never dreamed that anything of value might be found in the West. What new ...