Chinese Classics: Four Great Classical Novels
Click on the title of each of the novels for more information, a summary, available translations, and online resources.
|Dream of the Red Chamber(Alternative Titles: A Dream of Red Mansion/Story of the Stone)||红楼梦/石头记 (Hóng Lóu Mèng/Shítóujì)||Cao Xueqin 曹雪芹 (last 40 chapters by Gao E 高鹗 )||18thCentury|
|Journey to the West||西游记 (Xī Yóu Jì)||Wu Cheng’en 吴承恩||16th Century|
|Romance of the Three Kingdoms||三国演义 (Sānguó Yǎnyì)||Luo Guanzhong 罗贯中||14thCentury (1360)|
|Water Margin(Alternative Titles: Story of the Marches/ Outlaws of the Water Margin/All Men are Brothers)||水浒传 (Shuǐhǔ zhuán)||Shi Nai’an 施耐庵||14thcentury|
Secondary Sources on the Four Classic Novels
- Berry, Margaret. (1988). The Chinese classic novels: An annotated bibliography of chiefly English-language studies. New York: Garland. (Reprint 2010, Routledge Revivals).
- Hsia, Chih-tsing. (1968).The classic Chinese novel: a critical introduction. New York; London: Columbia University Press (Reprinted in 1980. Bloomington: Indiana University Press).
- Besides the four classical novels discussed here, Hsia’s study also looks at two additional novels often considered classics: Golden Lotus or Plum in the Golden Vase (Jinpingmei金瓶梅 ), and The Scholars (Rulin waishi 儒林外史).
- Knight, Sabina. (2012). Chinese literature: A very short introduction. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
- Lévy, A., & Nienhauser, W. H. (2000). Chinese literature, ancient and classical. Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
- Plaks, Andrew H. (1987). Four masterworks of the Ming novel. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
- Rolston, David L. (Ed.). (1989). How to read the Chinese novel. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.