Brill’s Encyclopedia of China

Get access Subject: Asian Studies
Managing Editor English Edition: Daniel Leese

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Brill’s Encyclopedia of China Online is based on the originally a thousand-page reference work on China with a clear focus on the modern period from the mid-nineteenth century to the 21st century. Written by the world’s top scholars, Brill’s Encyclopedia of China is the first place to look for reliable information on the history, geography, society, economy, politics, science, and culture of China.

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(3,838 words)

Author(s): Schmidt-Glintzer, Helwig | Hockx, Michel | Louie, Kam
1. The Classic Novel and its Precursors The first great, "classic" novels of China, whose origins go back to the time around 1400, but which are known only from editions from the 16th and 17th centuries, mirror the special circumstances of that epoch. A new element was that the novels dealt with the traditional storytelling material in a distanced and partially ironic way. The novels Sanguozhi [tongsu] yanyi ( The Three Kingdoms History [with Popular Explanations] or short: The History of the Three Kingdoms), Shuihu zhuan ( Water Margin/ Outlaws of the Marsh), as well as Kin Ping Meh ( Jinping…


(2,946 words)

Author(s): Gieselmann, Martin
In its journey around the world, film reached China at the end of the 19th century. The first documented screening of the "electrical shadows" ( dianying), as movies are still called today, occurred in Shanghai in 1896. In its early period, it was above all the Beijing opera which made use of motion pictures in order to document its classical theater productions. Chinese cinema really began in 1916 when Zhang Shichuan's Wronged Souls in an Opium Den ( Heiji yuanhun) flickered across the big screen. The earliest Chinese movie still in existence is Romance of a Fruitpeddler ( Laogong zhi aiqinq,…


(945 words)

Author(s): Ash, Robert F.
The fishing grounds within the area of China's continental shelf cover an area of 2.8 million km². Some two-thirds of these fishing grounds are located in the South China Sea. An additional 16,000 km² of shallow water and shoals are capable of supporting marine fishing. In 1997, there were also more than 170,000 km² of inland water, distributed among lakes (75,000 km²), ponds (19,000 km²), reservoirs (23,000 km²), as well as rivers and streams (53,000 km²). Of this, 47,000 km² were already under use for aquaculture; that is about 70% of the potential cultivable area. From a base of just 4…