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Chinese Studies

The guide provides some starting points for your research of China at Duke

Databases

What are local gazetteers?

Definition one:

"Local gazetteers (difangzhi or fangzhi for short), sometimes also called local histories ... they were often compiled by members of the
local elite and were produced under the sponsorship of the local officials. ... They form one of the most important sources for the study
of Chinese history in the past one thousand years, since they contain copious materials on local administration, local economies, local
cultures, local dialects, local officials, and local dignitaries - materials that often cannot be found elsewhere."

Chinese history: a manual (Revised and Enlarged) by Endymion Wilknson; Harvard University Press, 2000.

Definition two:

"Local gazetteers (地方志) embrace all types of information concerning the historical, geographical, economic, administrative, biographical, touristic, etc., aspects of a locality in China. Local gazetteers are usually subdivided into provincial gazetteers (通志), prefectural gazetteers (府志), and district gazetteers (县志). The provincial gazetteers were usually compiled by summarizing the information in the prefectural gazetteers which were, in turn, abridged from previous editions and form the individual district gazetteers”.

China bibliography: a research guide to reference works about China past and present by Harriet T. Zurndorfer. Brill, 1995.

Definition three:

方志即地方志,它是一种记述地方自然和社会等各个方面历史与现状的综合性著作。方志的主要特点是在内容上具有广泛性。。。。在古代,方志被称为“一方之全史”,在现代,方志被誉为“地方百科全书”。在记述范围上,方志具有地域性。方志记述的范围,一般都以一定的地理区域为限。。。。在编纂刊印上,方志具有连续性。一部方志在首次编成刊印后,间隔一段时间,一般都要进行续修。

《中文工具书基础》朱天俊; 北京图书馆出版社,1998.

Local Gazetteer workshop at AAS/CEAL 2013

Contents of local gazetteers

Traditional local gazetteers 

Chinese           

English

前言和凡例

preface and general rules
舆图图考 maps
疆域,沿革 boundaries of the region and successive changes
山川

topographical features

古迹 ancient monuments
公署,城池 official buildings and city walls
河防水利河渠

water conservancy

职官

officials

选举

examinations

户口

population

田赋

land and taxes

市镇

market towns

物产

local products

风俗

local customs

人物列传

biographies

艺文

literature works by local people

杂记,杂事

miscellaneous 

 

New local gazetteers

Chinese English
政区 Boundary and administrative region
自然环境 Natural environment
居民 Resident
农业 Agriculture
水利 Water conservation
工业 Industry
城乡建设 Towns and villages
交通 Traffic
邮电 Post and telecommunication
贸易 Trade
财政金融 Finance
经济管理 Economics and management
党派团体 Parties, groups and organizations
民政 Civil administration
劳动人事 Labor and personnel
政法 Politics and law
军事 Military affairs
科技 Science and technology
教育 Education
文化 Culture
体育 Sports
卫生 Hygiene
民俗 Custom
方言 Dialect
人物 Figures
大事记 Events and chronology