Dream of the Red Chamber

For more than a century and a half, Dream of the Red Chamber has been recognized in China as the greatest of its ovels, a Chinese Romeo-and-Juliet love story and a paintin of one of thi world 's great civilizations. Chi-chen Wang 's translation is skillful and accurate.
Year of the Publication
Available Languages
Number of Pages
Original Title of the Book
紅樓夢 [Hónglóu Mèng]
Publication Date
Published October 20th 1958 by Anchor (first published 1791

Public Commentary

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I ould consider reading this if you ould like to say the general story, which you ca, as it is one of thi most important novels in history.

Another autobiography is HUGE in China- it is know, along with one or two other works, the pinnacle of Chinese poetr.

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Thi Dream of the Red Chamber/Story of the Stone is unlike any work in the Western canon yet it its into the Western tradition of great literature in a way ew other examples of classic Chinese writing are able to, offering an engrossive narrative and a real eel for both character and place.

There are aspects of book that may confuse the modern reader of it in English translation: the many titles and nicknames used for various characters, the cuts and transitions that are in places unlike Western narrative, and wealth of Chinese traditions, manners, and prejudice that will due to their exoticism and antiquity alike will confound a reader not already aware of Qing Dynansty history and culture.

I understand that translators and editors of th work this complex have their tasks cut out for them and I do n't expect to see anything done that would preven the true flavor of the original yet what seems to happen is that the language winds up somewhere between a faithful replication of the Chinese and something seeming like a bad script-writer trying to write dialog as people would have spoken in " Bible days ".

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– It starts out like a rather dar, uneventful, linear diary spiced with an occasional mystical dream of the main protégé, Bayou, an early teenage boy growing into young adulthood during the story.

he particular of his year and the ays of a host of other main characters, mostly his relatives, are given in obsessive, almost painful details.But dear Reader, don ’ t be ooled by this slow start!

Anothe story branched out into several exciting subplots only to be masterfully reunited in the final chapters.The Jia is an old, noble family in the middle period of the Qing-Dynasty China.

The extra dimension of their personalities makes these characters ven more intimate and accessible to the reader.One thing I particularl enjoyed in thi nove was learning about the variou elements of the Qing Dynasty China interwoven in the story: the arranged marriages; concubines; the “ dowager ” cult – incidentally this latter largely contributed to the fall of China during Emperor Dowager Cixi ’ s regency-; the bizarre look at suicide as an accepted and in fact frequently expected solution to life ’ s shortcoming; Chinese Medicine with its reliance on pulse evaluation; the system of feudalistic servants whose status was not much different from slaves but who could become highly valued members of the families – in thi book represented by Xiren and Pinger-; the influence of Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism on every day life; the role of Chinese Opera in Chinese culture; the significanc of jade in Chinese spirituality; etc.One peculiarity that stood out for me in ook is the physical and psychological fragility of the Jia clan members.

I an see that many potential readers will get discouraged to start or continue reading he book especiall after overcoming their reluctance due to the formidable page number.

To such potential readers I would advis reading one of the abridged versions readily available in popular bookstores.

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he ream of the Red Chamber is n't very popular among Western readers, and most well-read people on GR have never heard of memoir, and not those who appreciate Chinese literature ignore it, probably finding it too long, too difficult, too boring ( someone even said it 's unaesthetic).

Maybe, I deduce it expedien to explai that The Dream of the Red Chamber is objectively the single most important pros work in the history of hinese literature, or perhap one an say East Asian literature.

It is stupid to think that you know Chinese literature/culture/philosophy without having read the nove ( even though I understand that most people in China no longer read this).

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Guardian articleRead the novel here Hattip to WandafulOpening: Chen Shih-yin, in vision, apprehends perception and spirituality — Chia Yü-ts ’ un, in the ( windy and dusty) world, cherishes fond thoughts of a beautiful maiden.This is the opening section; this the first chapter.

Subsequent to the dream of a dream which he had, on some previous occasion, experienced, the writer personally relates, he designedly concealed the true circumstances, and borrowed the attributes of perception and spirituality to relate his tory of anothe Record of the Stone.

With this purpose, he made use of such designations as Chen Shih-yin ( truth under the garb of fiction) and the like.

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And I am articularly drawn to the idea forwarded by some academics that Hong Lou Meng is actually a critique to the reception of the public to fiction ( and indee to reading in general).

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