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China: A 5,000-year Odyssey Paperback – 7 Jan 2018

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Product details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: SAGE Select; 1 edition (7 Jan. 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9352807243
  • ISBN-13: 978-9352807246
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 2 x 21.6 cm
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Product description


The book collects the results of Tan Chung’s life-long study. Standing at the forefront of academic research, he reviews China’s development and predicts the future trend of Chinese civilization with a well-rounded, global perspective. The new opinions and ideas in this book are thought-provoking and greatly inspire me.

(Xue Keqiao, Researcher, National Institute of International Strategy, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing)

In this book, Tan Chung presents the outcome of his long-term studies, illuminating the peaceful nature of Chinese development and highlighting the perils along the way. In general, this is a great story about China and an innovative monograph with both academic value and practical significance.

(Jiang Jinkui, Director, Center for Southeast Asian Studies, Peking University, Beijing)

Reading this book, I feel Tan Chung’s romantic spirit about Chinese history. He is an elder scholar who experienced his life in three representative civilized countries: China, India, and the United States. In the book, he discusses the successes and failures in the development of Chinese civilization. Although one may disagree with his arguments, you cannot deny that this book is not only an expedition, but also a long-lost innovation.

(Wang Wen, Executive Director, Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, Renmin University of China)

Such a bird’s eye view of Chinese history is rare and will be of use to millions of general readers as well as all students who study China, the emerging global power, all over the world.

(Manoranjan Mohanty, Former Professor, University of Delhi, and Honorary Fellow and Former Chairperson, Institute of Chinese Studies, New Delhi)

“Such a bird’s eye view of Chinese history is rare and will be of use to millions of general readers….” (Manoranjan Mohanty,)

“[T]his is a great story about China … with both academic value and practical significance.” (Jiang Jinkui,)

About the Author

The author of this book, Tan Chung, is a typical “Chindian” in both metaphoric and real sense. Born in Malaysia in 1929, his nine decades long life can be divided according to the Indian ashrama life stages into the brahmacharya (celibate student) phase from 1930 to 1954 living in China, the grihastha (householder) phase from 1955 to 1999 living in India, and the sannyasa (wandering recluse) phase from 1999 to date living in the United States. His body chemicals were built by Chinese air, water, and food, and his brain cells were climatized by the environment of Chinese culture. He was a witness of the birth of a new China as well as the “ancien regime” overthrown by it. His celebrated father, Tan Yun-shan, was welcomed by Gurudeva Rabindranath Tagore at Santiniketan in India as an emissary of Chinese civilization. Tan Chung’s arrival at Santiniketan in 1955 began the gradual process of stepping into the shoes of his father. He started his career as a Chinese instructor at the National Defence Academy at Khadakvasla in 1958 and some of his pupils of the 15th, 16th and 17th courses retired in the general’s rank in the Indian defence forces. He continued his chalk-consuming career until he retired from Jawaharlal Nehru University in 1994 with a seven-year stint as the Head of Chinese Studies in Delhi University in between. Many of his students have affectionately regarded him as a father figure. In 2010, he received the Indian civil award Padma Bhushan from Indian President Pratibha Patil and also the award of outstanding contribution to China–India friendship from Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in New Delhi. In 2013, he was conferred the honorary degree of Deshikottama by Visva-Bharati University. He was also the recipient of the award for “outstanding contribution to China studies” at the 6th World Forum of China Studies in Shanghai in 2015. That Forum generated the inspiration and energy for the production of this Odyssey

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