New Books in Buddhist Studies Podcasts

Listen to New Books Network podcasts featuring interviews with Press authors Hank Glassman, Bryan Cuevas, Lori Meeks, and Daniel Veidlinger: New Books in Buddhist Studies presents discussions with scholars of Buddhism about their new books.

The New Books Network “is a consortium of podcasts dedicated to raising the level of public discourse by introducing serious authors to serious audiences.”

Early Chinese Military Texts from the Yi zhou shu

Conquer and GovernChina’s Warring States era (ca. 5th–3rd century BCE) was the setting for an explosion of textual production, and one of the most sophisticated and enduring genres of writing from this period was the military text. Social and political changes were driven in large part by the increasing scope and scale of warfare, and some of the best minds of the day (including Sunzi, whose Art of War is still widely read) devoted their attention to the systematic analysis of all factors involved in waging war. Conquer and Govern, by Robin McNeal, makes available for the first time in any Western language a corpus of military texts from a long neglected Warring States compendium of historical, political, military, and ritual writings known as the Yi Zhou shu, or Remainder of the Zhou Documents.

May 2012 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3120-2 / $48.00 (CLOTH)

UH Press at Association for Asian Studies Annual Meeting This Month

Holiday Web Sale 2011

The Association for Asian Studies annual meeting is UH Press’ biggest scholarly exhibit/conference: 300 new and recent Asia books and journals will be on display and editorial and marketing staff will be attending. The Press’ publishing partners Ateneo de Manila University Press, Cornell University East Asia Program, KITLV Press, NIAS Press, NUS Press (Singapore), and University of the Philippines Press will be exhibiting in neighboring booths, in addition to newcomer MerwinAsia. See you in Toronto!

New in the Kuroda Classics in East Asian Buddhism Series

Signs from the Unseen RealmIn early medieval China hundreds of Buddhist miracle texts were circulated, inaugurating a trend that would continue for centuries. Each tale recounted extraordinary events involving Chinese persons and places—events seen as verifying claims made in Buddhist scriptures, demonstrating the reality of karmic retribution, or confirming the efficacy of Buddhist devotional practices. Robert Ford Campany, one of North America’s preeminent scholars of Chinese religion, presents Signs from the Unseen Realm: Buddhist Miracle Tales from Early Medieval China, the first complete, annotated translation, with in-depth commentary, of the largest extant collection of miracle tales from the early medieval period, Wang Yan’s Records of Signs from the Unseen Realm, compiled around 490 C.E.

Classics in East Asian Buddhism
March 2012 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3602-3 / $65.00 (CLOTH)
Published in association with the Kuroda Institute

New Catalog: Asian Studies 2012

Asian Studies 2012 catalog
The UH Press Asian Studies 2012 catalog is now available online. To view the 3.8M PDF, click on the cover image to the left.

Highlights include:

* A pioneering study of the fate of Buddhism during the communist period in Cambodia (Buddhism in a Dark Age: Cambodian Monks under Pol Pot)

* The first major work of Edogawa Ranpo (1894-1965), “Japan’s Edgar Allan Poe” (Strange Tale of Panorama Island)

* The first definitive chronicle of a remarkable phenomenon in Chinese architecture (Original Copies: Architectural Mimicry in Contemporary China)

* A new volume in the Dimensions of Asian Spirituality series (Theravada Buddhism: The View of the Elders)

* A study of Buddhist miracle texts by one of the preeminent scholars of Chinese religion (Signs from the Unseen Realm: Buddhist Miracle Tales from Early Medieval China)

* Two new volumes in a series designed to help students learn the most frequently used Chinese characters (Remembering Traditional Hanzi 2Remembering Simplified Hanzi 2)

* Innovative studies on Japanese popular and visual culture (Passionate Friendship: The Aesthetics of Girl Culture in Japan; Drawing on Tradition: Manga, Anime, and Religion in Contemporary Japan; The Art of Censorship in Postwar Japan; Japanese Cinema in the Digital Age)

* A colorful, comprehensive guide to Hawai‘i’s Japanese Buddhist temples (Japanese Buddhist Temples of Hawai‘i: An Illustrated Guide)

* The latest books in a popular Korean language textbook series (Integrated Korean: Intermediate 1, Second Edition, Textbook, Workbook)

* A richly illustrated look at the artisans of Himachal Pradesh and their work (Making Faces: Self and Image Creation in a Himalayan Valley)

* An insider’s view of the sex trade on the Lao-Thai border (The Perfect Business? Anti-Trafficking and the Sex Trade along the Mekong)

Second Volume of Remembering Traditional Hanzi Now Available

Remembering Traditional Hanzi 2Remembering Traditional Hanzi 2, by James W. Heisig and Timothy W. Richardson, is the second of two volumes designed to help students learn the meaning and writing of the 3,000 most frequently used traditional Chinese characters. (A parallel set of volumes has been prepared for simplified characters.) The 1,500 characters introduced in Book 1 include the top 1,000 by frequency, plus another 500 best learned at an early stage. Book 2 adds the remaining 1,500 characters to complete the set.

January 2012 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3656-6 / $29.00 (PAPER)

Choice Magazine’s Outstanding Academic Titles for 2011 Announced

Each year Choice Magazine, the official publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries, compiles a distinguished list of Outstanding Academic Titles. The following UH Press book was recognized for 2011. A complete list of titles will be available in Choice’s January 2012 issue.

Soldiers on the Cultural Front: Developments in the Early History of North Korean Literature and Literary Policy by Tatiana Gabroussenko

“[A] superbly researched, readable study. . . . Gabroussenko’s account of writers in the last ‘socialist paradise’ is invaluable, if tragic, reading. . . . Highly recommended.” —Choice (February 2011)

Sitting in Oblivion: The Heart of Daoist Meditation, by Livia Kohn and distributed by UH Press for Three Pines Press, was also recognized as a 2011 Outstanding Academic Title.

New in the Critical Interventions Series

Uneven ModernityPostsocialist China is marked by paradoxes: economic boom, political conservatism, cultural complexity. Uneven Modernity: Literature, Film, and Intellectual Discourse in Postsocialist China, Haomin Gong’s dynamic study of these paradoxes, or “unevenness,” provides a unique and seminal approach to contemporary China. Reading unevenness as a problem and an opportunity simultaneously, Gong investigates how this dialectical social situation shapes cultural production.

Critical Interventions
December 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3531-6 / $47.00 (CLOTH)

New in the Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy Monograph Series

One and ManyIs the world one or many? In One and Many: A Comparative Study of Plato’s Philosophy and Daoism Represented by Ge Hong, Ji Zhang revisits this ancient philosophical question from the modern perspective of comparative studies. His investigation stages an intellectual exchange between Plato, founder of the Academy, and Ge Hong, who systematized Daoist belief and praxis. Zhang not only captures the tension between rational Platonism and abstruse Daoism, but also creates a bridge between the two.

“This is a work of great intellectual daring, requiring immense erudition and impressive power of synthesis. The topic, comparing the ontological ideas of Plato and Ge Hong with special reference to their implications for the one-many problem, is unique, stimulating and highly important, identifying a crucial area for cross-cultural and comparative research and producing a creative, informed, thoughtful, incisive and skillful response to the considerable challenge of making such an ambitious project bear fruit.” —Dr. Brook Ziporyn, Professor of Religion and Philosophy, Department of Religious Studies, Northwestern University

Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy Monographs, No. 22
December 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3554-5 / $27.00 (PAPER)

In Memoriam — John R. McRae

Buddhist scholar John R. McRae passed away last month. In an announcement for H-Buddhism (the Buddhist Scholars Information Network), A. Charles Muller wrote: “It is with heavy heart that I pass on to you the sad news [of John McRae’s] passing away in Bangkok Hospital at 12:30 pm on October 22, 2011, at the age of 64, after a 16-month bout with pancreatic cancer.”

The Press extends its sincere condolences to John’s wife, Jan Nattier, and their family.

A memorial event will be held on Sunday, November 20, 7-8:30 pm, at the Parc 55 hotel in San Francisco.

The Material Spirit of the Chinese Lifeworld

Burning MoneyFor a thousand years across the length and breadth of China and beyond, people have burned paper replicas of valuable things—most often money—for the spirits of deceased family members, ancestors, and myriads of demons and divinities. Although frequently denigrated as wasteful and vulgar and at times prohibited by governing elites, today this venerable custom is as popular as ever. Burning Money: The Material Spirit of the Chinese Lifeworld, by C. Fred Blake, explores the cultural logic of this common practice while addressing larger anthropological questions concerning the nature of value. The heart of the work integrates Chinese and Western thought and analytics to develop a theoretical framework that the author calls a “materialist aesthetics.” This includes consideration of how the burning of paper money meshes with other customs in China and around the world.

“Although focused on the topic of paper money, this study is in fact a much more ambitious consideration of Chinese life and civilization. Employing a distinctive mix of philosophical meditation, ethnographic vignette, historical narrative, folk tales, and more conventional anthropological analysis, Blake has constructed an impressively literate picture of what he clearly and persuasively views as the elusive ‘spirit’ of Chinese culture. This is a unique, highly original, and wide-ranging book.” —P. Steven Sangren, Cornell University

September 2011 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3532-3 / $52.00 (CLOTH)