New Books on Chinese Manuscript Culture

Published three books on Chinese calligraphy and painting last year, i.e., Hiding the Tip: Gateway to Chinese Calligraphy, Ink Bamboo in Chinese Poetry and Painting, and Dao, Neo-Confucian Principle, and Chan Buddhism in Chinese Calligraphy and Painting (Winner of the second China Fine Arts Award), Professor Wen Xing, Chair Professor and Director of DIC at Dartmouth, just published two new books on Chinese Manuscript Culture this year, An Explorative Study of the Chu Bamboo-Slip Calligraphy: The Calligraphy of the Xinian Curated by Tsinghua University, A Perspective of Chinese Manuscript Culture
and Orchid Pavilion in Chinese Manuscript Culture.

Chinese Manuscript Culture: An Interview with CSST

The study of Chinese Manuscript Culture and The Dartmouth Institute for Calligraphy and Manuscript Culture in China (DIC) were covered by Chinese Social Sciences Today (CSST), the prominent newspaper in social sciences and humanities in China. Proposed by Prof. Wen Xing as both a particular approach and an academic field, Chinese Manuscript Culture has been an effective way of experiential learning of traditional Chinese culture at Dartmouth, according to the CSST interview on page 3, 23 October 2015.

Silk Painting from the SSCP

Established in 1979, Social Sciences in China Press (SSCP) has been the leading publisher in social sciences and humanities in China. It is the publisher who publishes China’s most prominent academic journals, such as the Chinese and the English editions of Social Sciences in China. The silk painting below was a gift from Prof. Wang Limin, the Executive Deputy Editor-in-Chief of SSCP, when he visited Dartmouth’s calligraphy and manuscript culture institute in October.
IMG_5094 ed

Chinese Manuscript Culture as a Methodology

On Monday, 24 August 2015, Prof. Wen Xing was invited to deliver a lecture on Chinese Manuscript Culture in the conference room (12F) of the China Social Sciences Press of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, “The Methodological Significance of Chinese Manuscript Culture.”

As Prof. Xing presented, from a postmethod perspective, what Chinese Manuscript Culture brought us exceeded traditional research subjects, materials and methodologies thus opened up a new field of study in traditional Chinese calligraphy and manuscripts.

Xing argued that the future of the humanities would be largely decided by how we reflected and exceeded the traditional concepts and theories of natural sciences.

Since the latest quantum cosmology almost simply repeated what Buddhists, Daoists and Confucians had proposed for cosmology thousands of years ago, it is inevitable to reconsider the scholarly and religious traditions as well as the latest scientific discoveries and theories from the perspective of the humanities in the East, as Xing argued. This is one perspective from which we see the methodological significance of Chinese Manuscript Culture.

DIC Shanghai

The Dartmouth Institute for Calligraphy and Manuscript Culture in China (DIC) set up its office and studio in the Imperial Library – the Siku Study at Xinchang, Pudong District, Shanghai. On August 15, 2015, Mr. Zhao Ruichun, Deputy Minister of the Publicity Department of Pudong District and Mr. Cai Baoguang, Secretary General of the China Cultural Heritage Foundation unveiled the plaque of the DIC in the opening ceremony in Pudong.

Deputy Minister Zhao Ruichun and Secretary General Cai Baoguang Unveiling the DIC Plaque


Director Liu Heran (Special Fund for Ancient Books of the China Cultural Heritage Foundation) Chairing the Ceremony


Renowned Calligraphy Expert Dr. Fu Shen Donating His Calligraphy to Mayor Lin Tingjun


IMG_0844 -
Prof. Xing Wen Delivering Opening Remarks


TV Host

Over 20 News Media Covered the Ceremony

The Forest of Stelae

August 1, 2015, Dartmouth students visited the Forest of Stelae in Xi’an, Northwest China. Prof. Xing highlighted a Tang Dynasty Emperor’s calligraphy of the Filial Piety and had the following picture taken in front of the masterpiece.

Some Dartmouth students looked into the details of the stone classic in clerical script.

Now the students understood why the characters in the calligraphy masterpieces included in our calligraphy textbook were white with black background.


Master Mengcan’s Buddhist Calligraphy

July 28, 2015 was a day of Master Mengcan’s calligraphy for Prof. Xing. Master Mengcan, born in July 1915, is one of the most prominent Buddhist masters in China. In the morning, Prof. Xing had the honor to view the following two pieces of Master Mengcan’s calligraphy work:
Master Mengcan’s Calligraphy Done When He Was 95

Master Mengcan’s Calligraphy Done When He Was 100

In the afternoon, Prof. Xing talked on Master Mengcan’s calligraphy in CH 11 as scheduled:

Master Mengcan Guan
(left) Master Mengcan’s Calligraphy Reconstructed by Wen Xing