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The Tale of Kiêu

The Tale of Kiêu: A bilingual edition of Nguyen Du`s Truyên Kiêu

Translated and Annotated by Huỳnh Sanh Thông
with a Historical Essay by Alexander B. Woodside
Copyright Date: 1983
Published by: Yale University Press
Pages: 216
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  • Book Info
    The Tale of Kiêu
    Book Description:

    Since its publication in the early nineteenth century, this long narrative poem has stood unchallenged as the supreme masterpiece of Vietnamese literature. Thông's new and absorbingly readable translation (on pages facing the Vietnamese text) is illuminated by notes that give comparative passages from the Chinese novel on which the poem was based, details on Chinese allusions, and literal translations with background information explaining Vietnamese proverbs and folk sayings.

    eISBN: 978-0-300-16155-7
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
    (pp. ix-x)
    (pp. xi-xviii)
    Alexander B. Woodside

    All students of East Asian and Southeast Asian history and civilization will be profoundly grateful to Huỳnh Sanh Thông for giving English-speaking peoples, at last, such a shrewd and fastidious translation of one of the masterpieces of traditional Asian literature. To the Vietnamese people themselves,The Tale of Kiêuis much more than just a glorious heirloom from their literary past. It has become a kind of continuing emotional laboratory in which all the great and timeless issues of personal morality and political obligation are tested and resolved (or left unresolved) for each new generation. Western readers who are curious...

    (pp. xix-xl)

    Annexed to the Chinese empire for almost a millennium, Vietnam did not become an independent state until 939. Even then, the ruling elite clung to Chinese government institutions as the best safeguards against reconquest. Classical Chinese remained the official language up to the second half of the nineteenth century, when the French imposed their dominion over the country.

    But as national self-confidence grew, a movement arose to promote Vietnamese as a vehicle for creative expression among scholars. During the fourteenth century a demotic script calledchữ nôm(the “Southern script,” as opposed to the script of the “Northerners” or the...

  6. [Illustration]
    (pp. xli-xli)
    (pp. 2-168)
  8. [Illustrations]
    (pp. None)
  9. NOTES
    (pp. 169-208)
    (pp. 209-211)
  11. Back Matter
    (pp. 212-212)