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The Arts of China to A.D. 900

Customer Reviews:

Terribly edited, good illustrations

By Alfredo Pizzirani - November 25, 2004

This book is finely illustrated - good choice of items, and good-quality photographs (at least for objects still extant). Its companion book, by the same author, covers the history of Chinese Art to 1620. The third book in the series has not been published yet (2010 update: it is out now).
The text uses pinyin transliteration throughout, a big plus since this is what is used in mainland China today; for example, it makes things easier if you plan to travel to see some of the objects described.
The shortcomings, however, are significant. First of all, the location of the objects illustrated is not always stated, nor is this information provided in a separate list. Second, the style of the writer is appaling! Sentences are so twisted, they sound like a machine translation from Chinese! I had to read sentences twice or three times to figure out their meaning. The editors of the series should really have invested a lot more in revising the language for clarity.
Last, the... read more

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