American Culture in the 1940s

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Edinburgh University Press, 2008 - History - 280 pages
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"On Friendship, with its total of one hundred sayings, is the perfect gift for friends."--Feng Yingjing, renowned scholar and civic official, 1601

Matteo Ricci (1552-1610) is best known as the Italian Jesuit missionary who brought Christianity to China. He also published a landmark text on friendship--the first book to be written in Chinese by a European--that instantly became a late Ming best seller.

On Friendship distilled the best ideas on friendship from Renaissance Latin texts into one hundred pure and provocative Chinese maxims. Written in a masterful classical style, Ricci's sayings established his reputation as a great sage and the sentiments still ring true.

Available for the first time in English, On Friendship matches a carefully edited Chinese text with a facing-page English translation and includes notes on sources and biographical, historical, and cultural information. Still admired in China for its sophistication and inspirational wisdom, On Friendship is a delightful cross-cultural work by a crucial and fascinating historical figure. It is also an excellent tool for learning Chinese, pairing a superb model of the classical language with an accessible and accurate translation.


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1 Fiction and Journalism
2 Radio and Music
3 Theatre and Film
4 Visual Art Serious and Popular
5 The Arts of Sacrifice and Consumption
The 1940s in the Contemporary American Imagination

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Page 26 - States entering with reasonable confidence upon a policy of firm containment, designed to confront the Russians with unalterable counter-force at every point where they show signs of encroaching upon the interests of a peaceful and stable world.
Page 22 - And in the glare brighter than sunlight produced by the assault on the atom, we have all the light we need with which to examine this new world that has come into being with such clicking abruptness. Thus examined, the old sovereignties are seen for what they are — vestigial obstructions in the circulatory system of the world.
Page 23 - When he had penetrated the bushes, he saw there were about twenty men, and they were all in exactly the same nightmarish state: their faces were wholly burned, their eyesockets were hollow, the fluid from their melted eyes had run down their cheeks. (They must have had their faces upturned when the bomb went off; perhaps they were anti-aircraft personnel...
Page 15 - MY discussions of the concept of race, and of the white and colored worlds, are not to be regarded as digressions from the history of my life; rather my autobiography is a digressive illustration and exemplification of what race has meant in the world in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It is for this reason that I have named and tried to make this book an autobiography of race rather than merely a personal reminiscence, with the idea that peculiar racial situation and problems could best...
Page 18 - It is an awful responsibility which has come to us. We thank God that it has come to us, instead of to our enemies; and we pray that He may guide us to use it in His ways and for His purposes.

About the author (2008)

Jacqueline Foertsch is Assistant Professor of English at the University of North Texas

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