Adrian Armstrong said that "editors are the football referees of text-based research." When editing a literary work with a textual history as long and complicated as Hongloumeng (Dream of the Red Chamber, also known as The Story of the Stone), the most famous Chinese novel written in the 18th century, the issues and problems involved are at times more challenging than most referees could have anticipated. Since the novel's emergence, generation after generation of readers, critics, and editors have argued about how it should be read, without reaching any unanimous answers to the questions and doubts raised by commentators and general readers. Not even the basic text of the novel has been established with certainty. That is why David Hawkes (1923-2009), the primary English translator of the Penguin edition of the novel, stated at the very beginning of his introduction to Volume I in 1973: "It is a somewhat surprising fact that the most popular book in the whole of Chinese literature remained unpublished for nearly thirty years after its author's death, and exits in several different versions, none of which can be pointed to as definitively 'correct'"
|Journal||Chinese Literature: Essays, Articles, Reviews (CLEAR)|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|