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Grant number: FA-11778-77

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Kenneth J. DeWoskin
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1382)

The Fang-shih of Medieval China and his Role in the Development of Narrative

A two part study of the fang-shih, practitioners of occult arts and diverse entertainments in early China, based on dynastic history and early fiction sources. The first part is a historical study of the fang-shih analyzing his unusual social mobility, his role as a cultural synthesizer, and his promotion of subliterary and foreign ideas, practices and narrative materials into the Chinese written tradition. The second part is a literary study exploring features of fang-shih biographies in the various extant historical works, biographies which are prime examples of the rhetoric of history moving toward the rhetoric of fiction.

Project fields:
Asian Languages; East Asian Literature

Fellowships for University Teachers

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$16,521 (approved)
$16,521 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/1977 – 5/31/1978