01 April 2011

Bibliography: Books on China


This is a small but lengthening selection of many books on China I would like to recommend. See my separate lists on Hong Kong and Singapore. Click on each title to read my reviews and buy these books on Amazon.

Click here to see a slideshow of my pictures from a trip to Yunnan I took in 2011. I advise you to view the show at full screen.

Guides and Maps

Goodman, Jim: Yunnan: China South of the Clouds (Hong Kong: Odyssey Books, 2009).

Mansfield, Stephen: Yunnan (Bucks, England: Bradt Guides, 2007).


Pisu, Renata: La Via della Cina (Milano: Sperling & Kupfer, 1999). Racconto di un'italiana in Cina negli anni cinquanta, con considerazioni a distanza di anni.

History and Culture

Donda, Massimo: Pillole di Cina (2013). Una macedonia di informazioni, disordinate ma divertenti.

Chang, Iris: The Rape of Nanking (London: Penguin, 2007). A controversial account of a horrifying episode of the Japanese occupation of China.

Chang, Jung: Empress Dowager Cixi (London, GLobalflair, 2013). Very sympathetic biography of a key woman in Chinese history.

Fairbank, John K. and Edwing Reischauer: China: Tradition and Transformation (Boston, Houghton Mufflin, 2nd ed., 1989).

Gernet, Jacques: Daily Life in China on the Eve of the Mongol Invasion, 1250-1276 (Palo Alto: Stanford U. Press, 1962).

Mo Yan: Red Sorghum (London: Penguin, 1994). A historical novel of China in the 1930s during the Japanese occupation. In italiano: Sorgo rosso (Einaudi tascabili).

Rampini, Federico: L'Ombra di Mao (Milano: Mondadori, 2008). Una facile introduzione ad un personaggio chiave del XX secolo

Rastelli, Achille: Italiani a Shanghai (Milano: Mursia, 2010). Storia della marina militare italiana in Cina dall'unità d'Italia alla disfatta della seconda guerra mondiale.

Redaelli, Margherita: Il mappamondo con la Cina al centro (Pisa: ETS, 2007) Fonti antiche e mediazione culturale nell'opera el gesuita Matteo Ricci.

Rosati Freeman, Francesca: Benvenuti nel Paese delle Donne (Roma: XL Edizioni, 2010). Ritorno nello Yunnan sulla scia di Namu (vedi il libro Leaving Mother Lake).

From Within the Country

Hessler, Peter: River Town (London: John Murray, 2001). A Peace Corps volunteer spends two years in China in the mid-1990s.

Namu and Christine Mathieu: Leaving Mother Lake (London: Abacus, 2003). The story of Namu, a gifted singer from the Moso minority in Yunnan. Pubblicato in italiano come Il Paese delle Donne (Sperling e Kupfer).

Xinran: What the Chinese Don't Eat (London: VIntage Books, 2006).

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