Sarah Allan

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Sarah Allan (simplified Chinese: 艾兰; traditional Chinese: 艾蘭; pinyin: Ài Lán; born 1945) is an American paleographer and scholar of ancient China. She is currently Burlington Northern Foundation Professor of Asian Studies in the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures at Dartmouth College, Chair for the Society for the Study of Early China[1] and Editor of Early China.[2] Previously, she was Senior Lecturer in Chinese at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London. She is best known for her interdisciplinary approach to the mythological and philosophical systems of early Chinese civilization.

Biography[edit]

Allan received a B.A. degree in 1966 from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in 1969 and 1974 respectively from the University of California, Berkeley.[3] She has published widely in English and Chinese (as Ai Lan 艾兰). In her work, Allan has presented an attempt to reconstruct the basic concepts of the mythology of China's Shang dynasty based on evidence from a number of sources, including Shang inscriptions (primarily from oracle bones, as well as bronzes), myths and stories recorded during the Zhou and Han dynasties that followed the Shang, which appear to be derived from Shang sources, as well as archaeological data.[4] Her works have been translated into both Chinese and Korean.[5] Her most recent book is Buried Ideas: Legends of Abdication and Ideal Government in Recently Discovered Early Chinese Bamboo-slip Manuscripts (SUNY Press, 2015), which discusses four Warring States period (475-221 BCE)[6] bamboo-slip texts about Yao's abdication to Shun, centering on issues of meritocracy and hereditary succession.[7]

Allan has also collaborated extensively with Chinese scholars, Li Xueqin 李学勤 and Qi Wenxin 齐文心 in particular, in publishing Chinese materials in Western collections in order to make them available to scholars in China. Another area of collaboration is her organization of international conferences and workshops on Chinese excavated texts.[8]

For a time, Allan was Senior Lecturer in Chinese at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London. She is currently Burlington Northern Foundation Professor of Asian Studies in the Department of Asian and Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures at Dartmouth College, Chair for the Society for the Study of Early China and Editor of Early China.

Allan is married to the artist Nicol Allan.

Selected works[edit]

Monographs[edit]

  • Allan, Sarah (2015), Buried Ideas: Legends of Abdication and Ideal Government in Recently Discovered Early Chinese Bamboo-slip Manuscripts, SUNY series in philosophy and culture, SUNY Press, ISBN 978-1-43845-777-2
  • Allan, Sarah (1997), The Way of Water and Sprouts of Virtue, SUNY series in Chinese philosophy and culture, SUNY Press, ISBN 978-0-7914-3386-7
  • Allan, Sarah (1991), The Shape of the Turtle: Myth, Art, and Cosmos in Early China, SUNY series in Chinese philosophy and culture, SUNY Press, ISBN 978-0-7914-0460-7
  • Allan, Sarah (1981), The Heir and the Sage: Dynastic Legend in Early China, Issue 24 of Asian library series, Chinese Materials Center, ISBN 978-0-89644-636-6

Collaborative works[edit]

Articles[edit]

  • Allan, Sarah (2015), "'When Red Pigeons Gathered on Tang's house': A Warring States Period Tale of Shamanic Possession and Building Construction Set at the Turn of the Xia and Shang Dynasties", Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society, Series 3 (2015): 419–438, doi:10.1017/S1356186314000923
  • Allan 艾蘭, Sarah (2013), "The Life of a Chinese Historian in Tumultuous Times: Interviews with Li Xueqin, Part One", Early China, 35-36 (2012–13): 1–35, doi:10.1017/S0362502800000419
  • Allan, Sarah (October 2012), "On Shu 書 ('Documents') and the Origin of the Shang shu 尚書 ('Ancient Documents') in Light of Recently Discovered Bamboo Slip Manuscripts", Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, 75.3 (October 2012): 547–557, doi:10.1017/s0041977x12000547
  • Allan, Sarah (2010), "Abdication and Utopian Vision in the Bamboo Slip Manuscript, 'Rongchengshi'", Chinese Philosophy in Excavated Early Texts, Supplement to Journal of Chinese Philosophy, 37 (2010): 67–85, doi:10.1111/j.1540-6253.2010.01621.x
  • "He Flies like a Bird, He Dives like a Dragon, Who is that Man in the Animal Mouth? Shamanic images in Shang and Western Zhou Art", Orientations, 41, number 3 (April 2010): 45–51
  • Allan, Sarah (2009), "Not the Lun yu: The Chu Script Bamboo Slip Manuscript, 'Zi Gao', and the Nature of Early Confucianism", Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, 72 (2009): 115–151, doi:10.1017/s0041977x0900007x, JSTOR 40378848
  • Allan, Sarah (2007), "On the Identity of Shang Di and the Origin of the Concept of a Celestial Mandate (tian ming 天命)", Early China, 31 (2007): 1–46, doi:10.1017/S0362502800001796, JSTOR 23354211
  • Allan, Sarah (2007), "Erlitou and the Formation of Chinese Chinese Civilization: Toward a New Paradigm", Journal of Asian Studies, 66.2 (May 2007): 461–497, doi:10.1017/S002191180700054X
  • Allan, Sarah (2003), "The Great One, Water, and the Laozi: New Light from Guodian", T'oung Pao, 89.4/5 (December 2003): 237–285, doi:10.1163/156853203773644358, JSTOR 4528939

Works translated into Chinese[edit]

Edited volumes[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Home". www.earlychina.org. Retrieved 2016-04-13.
  2. ^ "Early China". Retrieved 2016-04-13.
  3. ^ "Sarah Allan". Dartmouth College. Retrieved 8 January 2015.
  4. ^ Review of The Shape of the Turtle
  5. ^ Allan, Sarah (1997-06-12). The Way of Water and Sprouts of Virtue. ISBN 978-0791433867.
  6. ^ Allan, Sarah (Spring 2010). "The Warring States Period (453-221)" (PDF). Indiana University. Indiana University. Retrieved April 13, 2016.
  7. ^ Allan, Sarah (2015-10-21). Buried Ideas. ISBN 978-1438457772.
  8. ^ "Dartmouth – Tsinghua International Conference on the Tsinghua Manuscripts | The Fourth International Conference on Excavated Chinese Manuscripts". sites.dartmouth.edu. Retrieved 2016-04-13.