Writing, Publishing, and Reading Local Gazetteers: An Interview

In late imperial China, how did local elites connect with and influence the central government? How was local information made and managed? How did the state incorporate frontier areas into the empire? How were books produced and read, and by whom? In his new book, Joseph R. Dennis helps answer these questions and more by studying the genre of local gazetteers. Focusing on the Ming period, Writing, Publishing, and Reading Local Gazetteers in Imperial China, 1100-1700 (Harvard University Asia Center, 2015) argues that gazetteers were “important points of intersection between the central government and local societies and one of the main vehicles for transmitting local information to central government officials.” We spoke about the book for the New Books in East Asian Studies Podcast and you can find that conversation by heading over here.