Mad Rulers and Worthy Sons: A Translation and Analysis of the Newly Excavated Zhouxun

Paperback: $35.00
ISBN-13: 9781931483728
Published: July 2023

Additional Information

240 pages
  • About the Book
  • This book presents the first study and translation of the ancient text Zhouxun (Instructions of the Zhou). Lost early but mentioned in the history of the Han dynasty, a copy appeared recently and was published as part of the Peking University collection. The work is unique in its claim that ancient Chinese monarchs determined their succession based solely on the abilities of their heirs, disregarding ritually sanctioned criteria, such as primogeniture and the nobility of the maternal lineage. Power transfer here combines hereditary and meritocratic factors in new and different ways. Mad Rulers and Worthy Sons provides a complete translation together with a detailed analysis of the history, structure, and contents of this important document. The book opens a new chapter in our understanding of political values and governmental procedure in early China.

  • About the Author(s)
    • Andrej Fech, Author

      Andrej Fech (b. 1973), Ph.D., is Assistant Professor in the Department of Chinese Language and Literature at Hong Kong Baptist University. His research focuses on early Chinese intellectual history: Daoist thought, excavated manuscripts, and comparative philosophy.