History of the Book in East Asia

An Introduction to the Technical and Cultural History of the Chinese Book, with Reference to the Book in Japan and Korea

Current Faculty: Deborah Rudolph

Description: This course offers an introduction to the technical and cultural history of the book in East Asia. Topics to be covered include physical formats and materials; methods of reduplicating text and image; editions, reprints, and forgeries; the role and nature of illustration; the economics of publishing and the identity of publishers; collecting and stewardship; the sensitive nature of books as conveyors of content and as objects; digital preservation of East Asian collections and archives. Primary focus will be on the traditional Chinese book, with significant reference to Japanese and Korean books. Class discussion will be illustrated by printed books, manuscripts, and graphics from the Fong Yun Wah Rare Book Room of the C. V. Starr East Asian Library, UC Berkeley.

 Requirements: The course is intended for the non-specialist and requires no knowledge of an Asian language.

Years Taught: 2014 (with Peter Zhou), 2016, 2018