Sima Qian: China's 'grand historian'
Speaking truth to power has always been a high-risk strategy in China. Its rulers tend to prefer flattery, and writers who forget this do so at their peril. China's "grand historian" - 2,000 years ago - was one of many who have paid a terrible price.
"Among defilements, none is so great as castration. Any man who continues to live having suffered such a punishment is accounted as a nothing."
The man who wrote those words is by no means a nothing today. In a nation obsessed by its history, Sima Qian was the first and some say the greatest historian....
comments powered by Disqus
- Raleigh Trevelyan, Chronicler of a Notable Family, Dies at 91
- Former spokesman of B.C. anti-immigration group wants UBC history prof fired
- Harvard's Steven Shapin Wins History of Science Award
- Middle East Studies Association Fights a Rising Tide of Critics
- Juan Cole says the postwar Middle East governments were modeled on the Soviet Union, though not communist (interview)