Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 15 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Ji, “collection,” is the last of the four-part Chinese bibliographical scheme after “Classics,” “Histories,” and “Masters.” Referring to collections of literary works, it is central to our understanding of the premodern Chinese conception of literature. This chapter focuses on bieji (literary collections by individual authors) and introduces the fundamental issues regarding the formation and content of a literary collection. It discusses when the term bieji first appeared, and what the early collections were; how a literary collection was constituted, circulated, transmitted, and reconstituted; what genres a literary collection might include, and more important, exclude; and in what ways a bieji is important to a historicized understanding of what constituted “literature” in the Middle Period. The coda briefly discusses the rebuilding of the lost and scattered medieval literary collections and the proliferation of specialized collections in the Song and beyond.

Keywords: literary collection (bieji), “little collection/selected works” (xiaoji), specialized collection, prose genres, wen

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.