The Phony Reformer: Greed, Status, and Patronage in Late Qing China (Hardback)Luke S. K. Kwong (editor and translator)
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Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Number of pages: 180
Weight: 399 g
Dimensions: 243 x 162 x 20 mm
I know of no other work-fictional or otherwise-that captures so vividly and insightfully the motivations and machinations of Chinese elites as they sought to turn the dramatic political, social, and cultural changes of the early twentieth century to their own purposes. Luke Kwong knows this period better than anyone, and he has done a superlative job translating and annotating the novel, making the work not only accessible but also illuminating and absorbing. -- Richard J. Smith, Rice University
What did reform mean at the end of the Qing dynasty? And how could one profit from it? The Phony Reformer is a lively and engaging tale of an intrepid, if sometimes morally dubious, scholar-official and his rise to prominence. How he successfully, fortuitously schemes his way from obscurity to power and profit opens our eyes to the complexity and intrigues of late Qing politics. This translation will be great for undergraduate Chinese history surveys as well as more specialized seminars on late imperial life, the civil service examination system, elite culture, and late imperial and twentieth-century Chinese fiction. -- Jia-Chen Fu, Emory University
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