New Book: Studies in Colloquial Chinese and Its History -- Dialect and Text

Richard V. Simmons's picture

By Richard VanNess Simmons

Dear Colleagues, 

I am happy to share the news of the recent publication of my new edited volume, Studies in Colloquial Chinese and Its History -- Dialect and Text, with Hong Kong University Press. The book is available at a discount via this link until June 16, 2022. 

This volume presents cutting-edge research into issues regarding prestige colloquial languages in China in their spoken forms and as well as their relationship to written forms and the colloquial literary language. These include the standard regional languages and prestige dialects of the past, the influence of historical forms of spoken Chinese on written Chinese, the history of guānhuà and the history of báihuà, proto-dialects and supra-regional common languages (koines), and their relationship to spoken dialects. The various studies in this collection focus on the dialect groups with the most substantial written tradition, including Mandarin, Wu, Min, and Cantonese, in north, central and eastern coastal, and southern China respectively. The contributors explore the histories of these dialects in their written and spoken forms, presenting a variegated view of the history and development of the regional forms, including their evolution and influence. This edited volume expands our understanding of the underlying factors in the formation of supra-regional common languages in China, and the written forms to which they gave rise. It broadens our understanding of the evolution of written and spoken forms of Chinese from a comparative perspective, revealing the interrelationships of various areal forms of Chinese and historical koines in China.


David Prager Branner (林德威,號茶米) is a sinologist who studies Chinese language and lexicography.

Marjorie K. M. Chan (陳潔雯) is associate professor at The Ohio State University.

Kengo CHIBA (千葉謙悟) is professor at Chuo University in Tokyo.

Weldon South Coblin (柯蔚南) was professor at the University of Iowa.

GUŌ Lìxiá (郭利霞) is professor at Nánkāi University, China.

Henning Klöter (韓可龍) is professor at the Institute of Asian and African Studies (IAAW), Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.

HUÁNG Lín (黃霖) is professor emeritus at Fudan University in Shanghai.

HUÁNG Xiǎodōng (黃曉東) is professor at Beijing Language and Culture University.

LIÚ Xīnzhōng (劉新中) is professor at Jinan University.

NÍ Zhìjiā (倪志佳) is a PhD student at Peking University.

SHÍ Rǔjié (石汝杰) is professor at Kumamoto Gaku’en University.

ZĒNG Xiǎoyú (曾曉渝) is professor at Nánkāi University.

ZHĀNG Huìyīng (張惠英) is a research professor at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and professor at Hǎinán Normal University.

ZHĀNG Měilán (張美蘭) is professor at Hong Kong Baptist University. 


Richard VanNess Simmons (史皓元)

Professor, School of Chinese, The University of Hong Kong