"Shen Fu's Six Records of a Life Adrift
is the most intimate document at our disposal of private life in late imperial China. Graham Sanders now provides us with a new translation for the 21st century, which is not only well researched but also highly readable."
Wilt Idema, Harvard University
"This delightful nineteenth-century narrative, which has charmed Chinese audiences for over a century, has finally found its match in this new translation by Graham Sanders. His rendering in English comes from a deep understanding of the language, style and artistic structure of the original, and is enriched by informative notes explaining the differences between Chinese and Western culture. What this unforgettable confessional prose has to show us about human nature is clearly expressed."
Milena Dolezelova-Velingerova, University of Toronto
"Shen Fu's subtle yet emotional account of his love-match with Chen Yun, their relations with his family, his pastimes with friends and courtesans, his travels far and near, his frustrations with work and his obsessions at play illustrate the life of a Qing lower gentryman in a patriarchal family, but at the same time reveal human complexities that require the nuancing of simplistic over-generalizations about class, gender, tradition, Confucian family values, and the like.
This lively new translation-the first in nearly thirty years-clarifies certain passages, helpfully adds section breaks, and provides explanatory footnotes. Also included are a family tree, a chronology, and other useful reference materials. The result is an edition that will enhance discussions in a variety of courses, from Chinese and world history to gender and family history."
Sarah Schneewind, University of California at San Diego