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World Book Day: 6 books to know China
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April 23 bears great significance on the history of world literature. It is on this day in 1616 that Miguel de Cervantes, author of Don Quixote, and William Shakespeare, widely recognized as the greatest English writer, both died. In 1995, the UNESCO's General Conference held in Paris designated the World Book Day on April 23 to pay homage to books and writers worldwide and to invite everyone to be a lifelong reader.

The following reading list consists of 6 books, 4 in English and the others in Chinese, about China and Chinese culture. Written by distinguished scholars, they offer a comprehensive introduction on the cultural root and outlook of China.

1. Insights into Chinese Culture

As an overview of Chinese culture, this book presents informative historical facts all the way to current cultural phenomena. Covering Chinese customs, scenic spots, science and technology, folk art, literature and international cultural exchanges, it serves as a perfect kick-start for anyone eager to learn about China.

2. Quotations from Confucius

This is a bilingual quote collection of Confucius, who throughout history is widely considered as one of the most influential individuals in shaping the mindset of Chinese people. Confucius' teaching and philosophy also have a great impact on people around the world which still lingers in contemporary society.

3. Chinese Folk Art series

Published by Shanghai People's Fine Arts Publishing House, the collection excels in both illustrations and essays. Every book focuses on one folk art, such as thangka, paper-cutting, clothing and Chinese New Year picture. Readers can view the exquisite photos while learning the history and evolvement of each art form.

4. Chinese Characters

Written language is the medium through which culture preserves. This book offers a concise and to-the-point introduction about the profound culture of Chinese characters. With abundant illustrated examples, it proves that learning the most difficult language in the world can be rather interesting.

5. Symbols of China

Taking a unique angle to analyze Chinese culture, this book selects over a hundred cultural symbols and tell the story behind every one of them. Like a hundred small mirrors, these emblems reflect the glamour of traditional Chinese culture.

6. Symbols of Jiangsu 

Above there is heaven, below there are Suzhou and Hangzhou – the saying pretty much depicts the significant cultural status this region has held since ancient China. If you are looking for a portable handbook of Jiangsu culture, Symbols of Jiangsu series is an ideal choice. It integrates many highlights of Jiangsu's cultural heritage including Suzhou garden, Kunqu Opera, embroidery and folk music.

 
Sponsored by: General Office and Foreign Affairs Office of Changzhou Municipal People’s Government
All rights reserved.Jiangsu ICP Record No. 05003616
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