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. Like 讀 dú (read, reading, look at, interpret) and 書 shū (history, write, record, book), which feature elsewhere in these interconnected sites, the character yí 遺 is taken from Li’s grass-script 草書 version of a ‘Letter to Shan Tao’ 與巨山源絕交書, a famous epistle by Xi Kang 嵇康, one of the Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove 竹林七賢. That letter frames the essay On Heritage 遺, itself a statement about the rationale of the Wairarapa Academy of New Sinology and these websites.
The featured art work on the masthead, a photograph of the garden at Chaotian Palace 朝天宫, the former Confucian Temple that now incorporates the Nanking Municipal Museum, was made in 2013 by the New York-based photographer Lois Conner, a friend who collaborated with and contributed generously to the China Heritage Project from its inception in 2005, as well as to The China Story Project from 2012. We are grateful for her enthusiastic support for China Heritage.
Many friends and colleagues have contributed to China Heritage Annual. I would particularly like to thank the two Guest Editors, William Sima and Yayun Zhu, whose ideas and work have made this inaugural issue possible. I am particularly grateful to Will Sima whose obsession with Nanking encouraged me to expand the purview of this work, something that Yayun contributed to with his broad knowledge of the scholarship related to the city. Duncan Campbell was, as ever, unstinting in his support and my dear friend of many years, John Minford, the inspiration behind our Wairarapa Academy, has also been extremely generous in allowing us to reprint both material from his Anthology of Chinese Literature and from the David Hawkes Literary Estate.
Michelle Garnaut’s kind invitation to the 2017 Shanghai International Literary Festival made it possible to launch this site in a city where I first studied in 1975. The tony surrounds of M on the Bund overlooking the Huangpu River allowed a project developed in a small town in the Wairarapa, New Zealand, to be part of the Bright Lights Big City ambience of the ‘Pearl of the Orient’.
Without long years of support from The Australian National University and the Australian Research Council, my work on New Sinology and China Heritage would not have been possible. In particular, I would like to thank Ian Chubb, Mandy Thomas, Claire Roberts, Bruce Doar, Sang Ye 桑曄, Judith Pabian, Gloria Davies, Jude Shanahan, Daniel Sanderson, Duncan Campbell, John Minford, Lois Conner, Jeremy Goldkorn, Linda Jaivin and Kevin Rudd for their encouragement and contributions to the first ten years of New Sinology.
— Geremie R. Barmé