The landscape of words: stone inscriptions from early and medieval China

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University of Washington Press, 2008 - Art - 397 pages
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This is the first study in a Western language devoted to one of the most visually distinctive features of the landscape in China--moya or moya shike, texts carved into granite boulders and cliffs that are part of the natural terrain at thousands of sites of historic or scenic interest. These inscriptions, carved in large, bold characters, served as a vast repository of texts produced continuously for over two thousand years and constitue an important form of public art. Focusing on the period prior to the eighth century C.E., Harrist demonstrates that the significance of the inscriptions depends on the interaction of words with topography, so that the medium of the written work has transformed geological formations into landscapes of ideological and religious significance.

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About the author (2008)

Harrist is associate professor of art and archarology at Columbia University in New York City.

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