A Silver Treasury of Chinese Lyrics
Edited by Alice W. Cheang
xxxviii + 342 pages
The song lyric (ci), which began as a form of minor divertissement in the urban pleasure quarters of eighth and ninth century China, evolved into a major, and then dominant, poetic form over the four centuries that followed. Though most of the original tunes are now lost, the lyric remains unrivalled among Chinese literary genres for musicality and sheer evocative power. It was also, until modern times, the preferred vehicle for the expression of romantic love.
The 128 poems in this collection are chosen to represent the genre's major stylistic developments and the varied talents of its best poets. These poems have been translated by some of the most respected scholars and translators in Chinese literary studies. Now English readers may share in the pleasure that the lyric has afforded its Chinese aficionados for over a thousand years.
Alice W. Cheang, the editor, read English at Yale University and earned her Ph.D. degree in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University.
This title is also available in the Renditions Paperbacks series.