Angela Pun & Paul W. Lewis; 49 Lahu Stories
This work presents the first comprehensive overview of oral literature of the Lahu ethnic group in English. Today there are approx. 600,000 Lahu living in four nations: Yunnan (China), eastern Burma, northern Laos and northern Thailand. Their language is in the Yi (Lolo) branch of the Tibeto-Burman family of languages. The 49 Lahu stories presented in this book are translated from the 1939 Lahu Reader—Lahu Ka Pui Ka Lao, long out of print. These stories were collected and written down by the Reverend Ai Pun (Saya Ai Pun), himself a masterful storyteller, who was also very concerned about the production of good Lahu literature. His inspiration, dedication and wonderful sense of humor shine forth in this book.
WL Order Code 22308
Bangkok 2002, 177 pp., 8 pp. illus. in col., 150 x 210 mm, 0.280 kg
Paul W. Lewis & Bai Bibo; 51 Hani Stories
The first comprehensive overview of oral literature of the Hani ethnic group of China in English translation. Some 1.3 million people, called Hani, live in Yunnan Province, in the extreme Southwest of China. They speak a language which is in the Lolo-Burmese subgroup of the Tibeto-Burman family of languages. Roughly ten percent of these Hani call themselves Akha and speak a related dialect, but are considered as Hani by the People’s Republic of China. The stories here are taken from the Doinia (Luchun) dialect of Hani, as spoken in the Luchun and Honghe area. The Hani people love to tell stories. These are told for purposes of entertainment, encouragement and enlightenment.
Paul W. Lewis; Akha Oral Literature
Presents the first comprehensive overview of oral literature of the Akha ethnic group of Southeast Asia in English translation. Included in this overview are stories and legends, the epic story of two brothers, the epic poem of creation, proverbs and an Akha lullaby. The Akha people, who live in China, Burma, Laos and Thailand, have a unique oral literature which has been handed down through time. The author started reducing the Akha oral literature to a written system in the 1950s and invested fifty years of research in recording the Akha oral tradition. This book presents an English translation of samples from this literature testifying to a rich storehouse of wisdom, fun and humor accumulated over the centuries by this unique ethnic group.
WL Order Code 22620
Bangkok 2008, repr. from 1904; 303 pp., 16 pp. illus., 1 folded map, 150 x 210 mm, 0.500 kg
Jack, R. Logan; Back Blocks of China, the
The book offers narratives of experiences among the Chinese, Sifans, Lolos, Tibetans, Shans and Kachins, in the lands between Shanghai and the Irrawaddy. In 1900, a party of British citizens fleeing the Boxer Rebellion left China using the back-door. This unusual group of escapees, consisting of business people and engineers, viewed the country that they traversed from a standpoint that was different from that of the usual travelers of the time. As they crossed parts of China previously unseen by Europeans, they observed and recorded their experiences. These records have produced a unique source book showing inner China and the borderlands with Burma of 100 years ago. The text is enriched with two maps and by 28 photographs taken by members of the group.
WL Order Code 21597
Bangkok 1992, 148 pp., fully illus., 8 pp. in col., 180 x 250 mm, 0.560 kg
Zhu Liangwen; Dai: Or the Tai and their Architecture & Customs in South China, The
This book is the first of its kind in the English language to deal extensively with the architecture of the Dai peoples of South China. It includes sections about Dai customs, ceremonies and beliefs, animistic as well as Buddhist, which are presented in parallel with physical descriptions of houses, villages and monasteries. The evolution of the houses on stilts, characteristic of Dai and indeed all Tai people, is discussed both in functional terms and in relation to aspects of the Dai mythology of Sipsong-panna. The cultural comparison between Dai and other Tai groups extends to symbolisms and the role of cosmology in determining the forms of monastic architecture. The authors produced a technically precise work which is stimulating and exceptionally well illustrated. Architects in the region may well draw lessons from the array of design “grammar” contained in these pages.
WL Order Code 22200
Bangkok 2001, first English trans. of 1913; 350 pp., 16 pp. illus., 1 folded map, 150 x 210 mm, 0.500 kg
Legendre, A-F; Dangerous Passes: Exploring Western China & the 1911 Revolution
Originally published in 1913 as Au Yunnan et dans le Massif du Kin-Ho, this report on the Legendre Mission’s travels of scientific and geographic discovery in Szechwan and the Tibetan steppes. A portrait of remote, mountainous regions, their natural phenomena and diverse ethnic groups, Legendre’s memoir also, by force of circumstance, becomes a dramatic tale of high adventure: engulfed by the Revolution sweeping across China, the Mission comes to a catastrophic end with Legendre’s work in ruins. Having barely escaped with his life, his retrospective account is marked both by failure and triumph. He offers invaluable perspectives on the region’s geography, flora and fauna, and on its rural life and trade. This record of a passionate scientist and a keen observer of China’s first great twentieth-century revolution, is as informative as it is fascinating.
WL Order Code 22127
Bangkok 1999, repr. from 1896; 437 pp., 16 illus., 1 folded map in pocket, 150 x 210 mm, 0.690 kg
Orleans, Henri D'; From Tonkin to India
A report on Henri d’Orléans’s trip to the sources of the Irrawaddy River in Tibet. The account is rich in details of the geography, tribal people, trade, languages and customs and beliefs of the regions the expedition crossed, through Yunnan, among many others. The Upper Mekong in China, the Salween and the Irrawaddy river valleys were further explored and a number of tribes from those areas are placed in the context of the history of the migrations from China. The reporter also has a keen eye for the political issues of the day, mostly the machinations of the British and French to further trade with the area and for the presence and activities of French missionaries, e.g. in Tibet.
WL Order Code 22309
Bangkok 2002, 170 pp., 8 pp. illus. in col., 150 x 210 mm, 0.270 kg
Paul W. Lewis & Bai Bibo; Hani Cultural Themes
The culture of the 1.3 million Hani People living on the mountains of southern Yunnan Province in China is brought to light by means of sharing its stories, proverbs, customs and rituals and thus opening windows of insight into the daily lives of these colorful people. Often called “Mountain Sculptors” because of the magnificent rice terraces they have created for the centuries, the Hani people are here described at a much deeper level than usual.
WL Order Code 22433
Bangkok 2004, 179 pp., 8 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, 0.300 kg
Berlie, Jean A.; Islam in China: Hui and Uyghurs Between Modernization & Sinicization
Islam in China defines the Muslims of China, in particular the Hui (Chinese Muslims) and the Uyghurs. Concepts of nationality (minzu) and umma (Islamic community) as well as analysis of Chinese culture or Sinicization enable the reader to understand the particularities of Islam in China. Mosques, Sufism, feasts, and family shape the Muslim society and its ethos. After the reforms of Deng Xiaoping, modernization plays an important role in the daily life of these Muslims; the impressive development also influences Islam in this part of the world. China’s modernization constitutes a model for Southeast Asia and helps the Yunnanese Hui in Thailand and Burma to be proud of their country of origin. One chapter portrays the Thai and Burmese Overseas Chinese, in particular in Chiang Mai and Mandalay.
WL Order Code 22024
Bangkok 1998, first English trans. of 1880 113 pp., 1 map, 150 x 210 mm, 0.180 kg
Dupuis, J.; Journey to Yunnan and the Opening of the Red River to Trade
This is the account of the daring journey of a French trader up the Red River in 1872-1873. This was the first attempt by a westerner to use the Red River to access the riches of Yunnan and defy the established Chinese and Vietnamese powers and their customs collectors. Sailing under the Chinese flag, J. Dupuis also defied official French foreign policy and showed that the trade was possible and that great profits were to be made. He cleverly made alliances and traded arms with the Chinese authorities in Yunnan and negotiated with the Black and Yellow Flag irregular armies. Whilst breaking treaties that France had negotiated with the Court of Hué, this bold trader made a journey that represented a major step in changing official French policies in respect to Tonkin, present-day northern Vietnam. J. Dupuis, who identified gold, silver, copper, tin and other mines, opened vistas, especially French, of a lucrative colonial adventure in Southeast Asia.
WL Order Code 22112
Bangkok 1999, first English trans. of 1893; 142 pp., 150 x 210 mm, 0.270 kg
Pichon, L.; Journey to Yunnan in 1892:, A
The book, originally published in 1893, is the vivid first-hand account of Dr. Louis Pichon’s two-month journey from Hanoi to southern Yunnan in spring 1892. Part travelogue, part tract, it urges development of France’s relatively new Protectorate of Tonkin. The text spans a variety of genres and takes up a number of issues of urgent concern for the colony’s economic development. The improvement of transportation links with China lies at the center of Pichon’s exhortations, and he discusses the future of trade and industry in the region with the passion of a convert. A medical doctor by profession, he also deals with the ravages of plague, with insalubrity, and ill health. A tale of colonial ambitions and attitudes, this highly readable account will appeal not only to specialists of Vietnam and Yunnan but to any reader keen to voyage in the “exotic” regions of northern Vietnam and southern China of some hundred years ago.
WL Order Code 22225
Bangkok 2001, first English trans. of 1894; 274 pp., 28 pp. illus., 150 x 210 mm, 0.405 kg
Ehlers, Otto E.; On Horseback Through Indochina Vol. 2:
The book provides an account of the adventurous journey German traveler Otto Ehlers undertook in 1891-1892. This volume chronicles the journey starting from Moulmein on Burma’s Andaman Sea coast and ending in Poofang on the border between the Sipsong Pana, now Yunnan, and French Tonkin, now Vietnam. Ehlers travels an unusual route; with intent to wander away from the itinerary followed by earlier explorers. Traveling without passports or official laissez-passers, but with letters of recommendation from Prince Damrong, Siam’s Minister of the Interior, and the British Consul in Chiang Mai, Ehlers cunningly used the locals’ fear of officialdom and his own imagination. His skillful use of both helped him to cross through British and partly Chinese-claimed Shan States from Chiang Rai in Siam to Chiang Tung. When Ehlers and his party were refused entry by Chinese officials coming from Yunnan, he set off at night, headed for the border with France’s Tonkin colony, and escaped through the tea gardens of Ybang in the Sipsong Pana. In the Shan States Ehlers observed the annual rocket firing competition and describes market towns and mule-caravans plying the Yunnan-Burma trails. Along his journey, Ehlers finds the time to observe and record what strikes him as unusual or at variance with other accounts of the numerous tribes and cities in the area. Hundreds of singular encounters with people are described and the logistics of shoestring traveling are documented in a unique and colorful style.
WL Order Code 22360
Bangkok 2004, 344 pp., 19 pp. illus., 16 pp. in col., 2 pp. maps, 2 CD-Roms, 150 x 210 mm, 0.540 kg
Holm, David; Recalling Lost Souls
This book explores an indigenous scriptural tradition found among the Zhuang, a Tai-speaking people who inhabit the provinces of Guangxi and Yunnan in southern China, It presents for the first time in English a remarkable collection of ritual texts, recently discovered in the remote highlands of nortwestern Guangxi. Written in the “Old Zhuang script”, these scriptures are cast in an archaic form of five-syllable verse. They recount how the earth and sky were separated at the beginning of the world, how human beings found water and learned to harness it, how fire was tamed, how rice was domesticated, how domestic animals were first created, and how human institutions like sacrifice, mariage, chieftaincy, and writing came into being. Many of the texts in this collection are recited for the recall of lost souls, much like the suu khwan texts of Thailand and Laos. Many parallels will be found here with the myths and legends of Tai peoples elsewhere, and readers with an interest in the religious traditions of the ancient Tai will find much new material highlighting substantial cultural continuities between the Zhuang and the Tai peoples of mainland Southeast Asia. The texts are presented in English and Zhuang, with extensive ethnographic notes. The introduction provides an overview of the Zhuang people, their history, their traditional culture, and their language and script. A companion CD-ROM provides additional material for specialists and students, including sound recordings of recitations, transcriptions and interlinear word glosses, photographs of the manuscript pages, and a complete glossary and concordance.
WL Order Code 22238
Bangkok 2001, repr. from 1890, 1897; 362 pp., 8 pp. illus., 1 folded map, 150 x 210 mm, 0.570 kg
Hosie, Alexander; Three Years in Western China
This book describes the travels undertaken by Alexander Hosie during his tenure as a British consular agent in Chungkiung, from 1882-1884. At the time this was the most important city in Szechuan Province, W. China; situated on the Yangtze River, 1,500 miles inland from its mouth, it was seen as the potential nexus for trade, giving access inland to the majority of the Chinese. Hosie’s main task was to assess the commercial potential of this remote part of China, hence his long and difficult journeys. Besides the hardships and dangers, Hosie described the landscape, details of manufacturing processes, the skills of the artisans, the great salt well near Tzu-liu-ching, the tea trade, methods of bleeding the opium poppy, and the pitiable work situation of Chinese laborers. Hosie served in Chinese cities until retiring in 1912. In honor of his contribution to botanical studies, a plant species was named after him, Osmosia hosiei.
WL Order Code 22333
Bangkok 2003 155 pp., illus., 53 pp. in col., 210 x 295 mm, 0.500 kg
Tapp, Nicholas & Don Cohn; Tribal Peoples of Southwest China, the
This book casts a unique light on the tribal minority peoples of China’s southwestern frontier region. These charming and realistic paintings, from the Miao albums of the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries provide a wealth of ethnographic detail on the ordinary, everyday lives of people like the Hmong and other Miao groups, the Yao and the Yi, and the speakers of the Tai languages. We see them transplanting rice, hunting and weaving, performing acts of robbery, marrying, celebrating festivals, and mourning the dead. Although the pictures may have been produced partly in response to China’s mission to colonize and subdue the southwest, there is a lively warmth and sympathy in many of these images which speak to a common understanding of humanity. Here, for the first time in print, an entire Album has been reproduced, together with samples from two other Albums, from the collections at the British Library. The illustrations are accompanied by their Chinese text and translations, ethnographic notes and an introduction by Nicholas Tapp.