Member book, Liu, Deflating Human Beings: Sources and Quotations from Around the World, v. 1: Numerlas–C

Xiuwu Liu's picture

Hi everyone,

I’m writing to announce the publication of Deflating Human Beings: Sources and Quotations from Around the World, v. 1: NumerlasC, Selected by Xiuwu R. Liu, xviii, 402 pp., 979-8660012402, Hermit Studio, July 4, 2020.


This collection of sources and quotations offers a panorama of the downside of the human condition, human conduct, and human nature: vanity, errors, sins, limitations, illusions, vulnerability, stupidity, inanity, misunderstanding, ignorance, self-deception, cruelty and much more, at individual, group, institutional and societal levels. Quotes—some may better be called excerpts—are selected from classics from around the world, from antiquity onward. To provide the widest coverage, I’ve also sampled contemporary works including college textbooks and trade books in two dozen fields or academic disciplines, highlighting history, literature and philosophy. Toward the same goal, I’ve dipped into published collections of quotes—as bibliographic record as much as for their insights—and borrowed from wits and aphorists both well-known and obscure, providing a showcase for their labors and fancy, for this is, after all, mostly a compendium of human folly and worse. The serious general reader, college students and faculty will find much to ponder in these quotes and excerpts. You may even find inspiration in this, among other things, anti-self-help collection.


The table of contents listing the sources in the volume with corresponding quote numbers in parentheses is too long to be reproduced here, so I’ll only list some of the 47 Asia-related sources below:



Sources and Quotations: NumeralsC (1–2057)


300 Song Lyrics, tr. Xu Yuanchong (33–46)

Anchor Book of Modern Arabic Fiction, The, ed. Denys Johnson-Davies (347–62)

Ancient Near East: Historical Sources in Translation, The, ed. Mark W. Chavalas (384–98)

Annals of Lü Buwei: A Complete Translation and Study, The, Lü Buwei (460–508)

Anthology of Chinese Literature: Beginnings to 1911, An, ed. and tr. Stephen Owen (517–69)

Anthology of Japanese Literature: From the Earliest Era . . . , ed. Donald Keene (570–80)

Arab and Jew: Wounded Spirits in a Promised Land, David K. Shipler (674–77)

Arthashastra, The, Kautilya (765–93)

Arts of China, The, Michael Sullivan (794–802)

As I Crossed a Bridge of Dreams: Recollections of a Woman . . . , Lady Sarashina (803–09)

Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth, An, Mohandas K. Gandhi (866–80)

Beauty and Sadness, Yasunari Kawabata (938–39)

Bhagavad-Gita: Krishna’s Counsel in Time of War, The, tr. Barbara Stoler Miller (996–1006)

“Big Ruan and Little Ruan,” Shen Congwen (1014)

Blackwell Companion to Philosophy, The, ed. Nicholas Bunnin and E.P. Tsui-James (1042–77) Book of Arab Wisdom: Proverbs and

Anecdotes, The, comp. Hussain M Al-Amily (1125–42)

Book of Lieh-tzu: A Classic of the Tao, The, Lieh-tzu (1164–71)

Book of Lord Shang: Apologetics of State Power in Early China, The, Shang Yang (1172–82)

Book of Songs, The, tr. Arthur Waley (1190–1216)

Book to Burn and a Book to Keep (Hidden): Selected Writings of Li Zhi, A, Li Zhi (1219–37)

Buddhist Thought: A Complete Introduction to the Indian Tradition, Paul Williams . . . (1335


“Chinese Diaspora Memoirs in the United States,” King-fai Tam (1555–58)

Chinese Jetsam on a Tropic Shore, N. I. Low (1559–61)

Chronicle of the Three Kingdoms (220–265) . . . The, Sima Guang (1580–96)

Chuang-tzŭ: The Inner Chapters, Chuang-tzŭ (1601–09)

Companion to World Philosophies, A, ed. Eliot Deutsch and Ron Bontekoe (1727–34)

Comparative History of World Philosophy: . . . , A, Ben-Ami Scharfstein (1735–49)

Complete Works of Han Fei Tzŭ: . . . , The, Han Fei Tzŭ (1857–62)

Conference of the Birds, The, Farid ud-Din Attar (1872–74)

Courtier and Commoner in Ancient China: . . . , Pan Ku (1924–37)


Appendix: Sources for Volumes 24

Author Index

Subject Index

About the Selector


For further information: e-book and paperback:

e-book only:, and

e-book only


Xiuwu R. Liu

Miami University

Numerals, of course (can count, but not type).