Books and Documents in Ancient China

Olivier Venture (EPHE, Paris)

Workshop for Manuscript and Text Cultures (WMTC) Lecture Series

The Hilary Term lecture in our WMTC series will be given Olivier Venture, Maitrise de conferences, EPHE, Paris, on Wednesday, 15 February 2017 at 5pm in the Magrath Room. 

After more than a century of discoveries, thousands of literary and technical manuscripts, as well as administrative documents, dating from the Vth century BCE to the IIIrd century CE are now available for scholars working on Ancient China. This enormous corpus mostly composed of hitherto unseen materials has fundamentally changed our perception of this period, which was long mainly based mainly on texts chosen, edited and copied through centuries by generations of the Chinese literate elite. In his lecture, Olivier Venture will propose a general overview of this excavated documentation, with a particular emphasis on the archaeological contexts, material aspects, and nature of the texts. He will also emphasise the importance of considering literary texts and administrative documents together in the same reflection.

The lecture is open to all those with an interest in text and manuscript cultures.