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Chinese Calligraphy

Chinese Calligraphy, Ouyang Zhongshi and Wen C. Fong, editors; Yale University Press, 2008, US$75. The pervasiveness and fondness for the written word among the Chinese is legion, yet only in the last few decades has Chinese calligraphy begun to be appreciated as an art form in the West. Even such an eminent sinologist as Karlgren wrote in 1923 that “the brush has debased Chinese script”. This is in sharp contrast to the prevailing Eastern view that it is by the brush that the script has been exalted into the purest of art forms. Of the several factors that kept so…

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