by Cao Xueqin, translated from Chinese by Wikisource Chamber Dream, Hung Lou Meng), originally The Story of the Stone, is a masterpiece. The fifth part of Cao Xueqin’s magnificent saga, The Dreamer Awakes, was It continues the story of the changing fortunes of the Jia dynasty. The Story of the Stone, Volume IV by Cao Xueqin and Gao E The Story of the Stone, also known by the title of The Dream of the Red Chamber, is the great.

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I hope to try this again some time those damning words! She is also a poet and player of the classical qin stringed instrument. I picked up ‘The Story stoone the Stone’ primarily as a challenge to myself, as I have long desired to either work through an epic-length Chinese or Russian classic.

The Story of the Stone – Wikisource, the free online library

Odeon, three volumes, — Sometime last year I become curious about Chinese literature, about which I knew nothing at all, and figured this would be as good a place to start as any. Another central character is Bao-yu’s cousin’s wife, the brash Xi-feng, who through sheer competence — her ability to browbeat the domestic staff and her skill in keeping her grandmother-in-law happy — has ended up managing the entire household.

In both a self-indulgent man whiles away his days with these women, creating and surviving the petty jealousies this attitude creates. The plot mostly-kinda-sorta focuses on Jia Bao-Yu, the male heir of the family, who lives a primarily ths life causing troubles for his family and his servants, and who also happens to be the incarnation of a heavenly stone, a fact that he is unaware of.

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Jia Lian becomes the sex addict and Jia Lan an adorable little child and soon you no longer see the names but the rich characters they refer to. As well, the childish antics take place within a large aristocratic clan and a great number of pages are given over to the day-to-day business, minor power struggles, and the like that take place among the kf family members and among the numerous servants.

The Story of the Stone

This is subsequently used to house Bao-yu and all the girls and in the early “golden days” their life there is almost idyllic, with their foremost occupation for a while a poetry club. Born with a jade stone in his mouth and spoilt by a doting grandmother, the family matriarch, he lives in fear of his father and prefers writing poetry to studying the classics. Bao-Chai, the solid, virtuous girl cousin, is telling the story about the Fifth Patriarchwho is old and looking for a worthy successor.


There is something moving about the deference shown to those higher and lower in the all-important hierarchy, wherein sincere warmth still has its place.

In the late 19th century, Hong Lou Meng’ s influence was so pervasive that the reformer Liang Qichao attacked it along with another classic novel Water Margin as “incitement to robbery and lust,” and for smothering the introduction of Western style novels, which he regarded as more socially responsible.

If it all sounds a little convoluted and silly, well, it is, but once the set-up is out of the way ‘The Story of the Stone’ really begins to shine, especially with regards to the realistic and psychologically penetrating characterizations and social interactions.

For a family of barely a dozen aristocrats, their domestic staff number in the hundreds. The stream of translations and literary studies in the West grew steadily, building on Chinese language scholarship. For example, it is obvious that Lin Daiyu will eventually die in the course of the novel; that Baoyu and Baochai will marry; that Baoyu will become a monk. The poems convincingly rendered in translation offer yet another perspective on the larger situation being described.

So he often experiences an unspoken frustration simply because he is a boy and so cannot really be like his cousins. The two main things that struck me as “odd” or “different” about this book were the tone and the narrative structure. What I can say for this book is that he does stick quite closely to the original text. Wang called the novel “the tragedy of tragedies,” in contrast to the prosperous endings in most earlier drama and fiction.

Oxford Online Bibliographies Chinese Studies. I fully realize that much of what I’ve been typing above has amounted to babbling nonsense, but I’ve come to realize that the books which make me do this are the ones that hijack my train of thought for the most considerable amount of time.

Much of the “action” involves the characters holding banquets, giving each other precious objects, putting on plays, composing poetry, sharing clothing, and so forth.

The Story of the Stone (The Dream of the Red Chamber) – Cao Xueqin

Men and Coa in Qing China: Sep 30, Colin rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: Something like 3 stars for enjoyment, bumped up to four for novelty and for my curiosity about where this is all going. Of the men in the family, the most active is Bao-Chai’s brother Xue-Pan, who is something of a rascal and whose misdemeanours and adventures provide many of the external story elements.


As the novel proceeds, however, the girls are scattered, by death, dismissal, marriage, and other misfortunes — and for Bao-yu, and by implication Cao Ot, marriage really is a misfortune.

The downside is that the names are in pinyin, which means a they are a little difficult to keep straight and b the meanings of the charact There are other translations xtory under “Dream of the Red Chamber.

As is mentioned during a conversation with Yu-cun near the beginning of the book, Bao-yu has an unusual obsession with girls, not only that he likes girls, but that he has grown up with girls and likes to do the activities they do.

Wong, Laurence Kwok Pun What main ideas—themes—does the author explore?

Quotes from The Golden Days. To ask other readers questions about The Golden Daysplease sign up. But over and above the novel hangs the constant reminder that there is another plane of existence — a theme which affirms the Buddhist belief in a supernatural scheme of things. Early Chinese critics identified its two major themes as those of romantic love, and of the transitoriness of earthly material values, as outlined in Buddhist and Taoist philosophies.

Their prophecies of forthcoming doom seem to be quaint non-sequiturs, but stofy is doubly false. Bondservant and Master New Haven,: I’m just glad I found this hidden gem of a book.

Petersburg both sory held manuscripts of the novel dating before the first print edition of All you need is ink and paper and a well-written story of another time and place. Now, this is only the first volume of a five-volume novel. Dec 18, Hadrian rated it it was amazing Shelves: But this novel lays out a sprawling story line with numerous characters with cwo impossible for western readers sfory remember or pronounce.

The debate over the last 40 chapters and the —2 prefaces continues to this day. Sun Wen At the far south-east end Pavilions nestled in artificial mountains. Schonebaum, Andrew; Lu, Tina Lin Ru-hai is conveyed to his last resting-place in Soochow; and Jia Bao-yu is presented to the Prince of Bei-jing at a roadside halt Chapter