Han Yu 768-824

A poet and leading essayist of the Tang dynasty, is well-known for his key role in the guwen j (ancient prose) movement, which aimed at eliminating the ornate style of writing popular at that time, and to create a vehicle for the advancement of orthodox Confucian values. He gained the jinshi degree in 792 but his official career was marked by set-backs and controversies, most notably when he was banished to Chaozhou in 819 for his protest against the Emperor admitting a bone of the Sakyamuni Buddha into the imperial palace.

Works available in English:

  • Growing old alive: poems by Han Yü (Kenneth O. Hanson). Port Townsend: Copper Canyon Press, 1978.

    Studies and Biographies:

  • Victor Eugene Manley, A conservative reformer in T'ang China: the life and thought of Han Yu (768-824).
       Ann Arbor, Mich.: UMI, 1988.
  • Charles Hartman, Han Yu and the T'ang search for unity. Princeton (N. J.): Princeton University Press, 1986.
  • David Pollack, Linked-versed poetry in China: a study of associative linking in lien-chu poetry with emphasis
       on the poems of Han Yu and his circle
    . Ann Arbor, Mich: UMI, 1985.
  • Madeline Kay Spring, A stylistic study of Tang 'Guwen': the rhetoric of Han Yu and Liu Zongyuan.
       Ann Arbor, Mich: UMI, 1985.
  • Stephen Owen, The poetry of Meng Chiao and Han Yü. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1975.