About China Heritage

China Heritage is a continuation and expansion of the China Heritage Project established by Geremie R. Barmé in 2005 and the e-journal China Heritage Quarterly, which appeared under the auspices of that project from 2005 to 2012.… Read

New China Newspeak 新华文体

This lexicon entry consists of the following sub-sections:
  • Introduction
  • New China 新华
  • New Writing 新文体 and Popular Language 大众语
  • Party & Other Eight-legged Essays 党八股
  • Parody & its Enemies 反讽,恶搞,原味
  • The Spring & Autumn Style 春秋笔法
  • New China Newspeak 一言以兴邦,一言以丧邦
  • Faithfulness, Expressiveness & Elegance 信达雅
  •   Introduction 文體五百歲一變,書體五百歲一變
    ——龔自珍《秦漢石刻文錄序》 This essay, originally published in 2012, is a preliminary attempt to describe what, since the 1980s, some Chinese writers have identified as ‘New China Newspeak’.… Read

    Loyal to Spiritual Civilisation 精神文明中的 ‘忠’

    Introductory Note 恢复不等于照旧,恢复应当是在新的历史条件下对旧的道德观念进行现代关照与诠释,赋予时代气息。以 ‘忠孝’ 而言,这是五四及其以后最受人们责难的价值观念。但平心而论,我们既然不能提倡 ‘不忠不孝’ 的反命题,何不对 ‘忠孝’ 观念进行现代诠释,以确立和完善现代国人的价值体系?而且, ‘忠’ 的对象在中国古代固然包括君主,但忠于君主并不是忠的全部内容。何况中国古人在践履 ‘忠’ 的观念时,并没有忘记 ‘民为贵,社稷次之,君为轻’ (《孟子:尽心下》)的原则呢?因此,中国旧道德的忠的观念与现代社会并不冲突,只是忠的对象在撇开了君主个人之后更加单一,那就是忠于国家,忠于人民。如果我们人民政权中的所有公仆都能做到这些,那么人民的情绪怎能还会不舒畅呢?哪里还要什么 ‘活血化瘀’ 呢? — ‘前言’,中外名人研究中心 编 《中国精神》,北京:红旗出版社,1991,第三页。… Read

    Chuci 楚辭, ‘I Alone am Pure and Will Not Submit’ 七諫 沈江

    The world’s ways change; everything is altered;
    I alone am pure and will not submit.
    Bo Yi starved himself on Shou-yang Mountain;
    Shu Qi’s name endures in ever-growing glory.[1] 世俗更而變化兮,
    叔齊久而逾明。 These lines are from ‘Drowning in the River’ 沈江, the second of the poems known as the ‘Seven Remonstrances’ 七諫 in The Songs of the South 楚辭, a collection of poems from the fourth-century BCE long associated with the name Qu Yuan 屈原, China’s ‘Archpoet’.[2]… Read


    China Heritage Annual was designed by Callum Smith who worked with me in 2016-2017 to develop a site that built on China Heritage Quarterly (2005-2012). The character 遺 yí, the leitmotif both of this site and of China Heritage, is in the hand of Li Huailin 李懷琳 of the Tang dynasty.… Read

    How to Read

    Reading is a guide into a cluster of ideas, texts and language offering a New Sinological appreciation of some of the living, if contradictory, traditions within Chinese cultural, political and social life.… Read


    A New Sinology Reader was designed by Callum Smith, under the guidance of Geremie R. Barmé, who conceptualised the site and its contents. The character 讀 dú, ‘to read’ (as well as ‘reading’, ‘look at’, and ‘interpret’), the leitmotif of this site, is in the hand of Li Huailin 李懷琳 of the Tang dynasty.… Read

    Zhuangzi 莊子, ‘Robber Zhi on Confucius’ 盜跖論孔丘

    In his ‘Biography of Boyi’ Sima Qian is befuddled as to why even the most vile people, the notorious Robber Zhi for example, can enjoy happy and prosperous lives. Fame in posterity and through the praise of notable figures at least assures the virtuous a reputation for the ages.… Read

    Sima Qian 司馬遷, ‘A Biography of Boyi and Shuqi’ 伯夷列傳

    Although in the world of learning there exist a large number and variety of books and records, their reliability must always be examined in the light of the Six Classics. In spite of deficiencies in the Odes and Documents, we can nevertheless know something about the culture of the times of Emperor Shun and the Hsia dynasty.… Read