In various ways, some subtle, some direct, the portrait of Confucius that Ssu-ma Ch'ien wove incorporated diverse levels of narrative dealing with the unpredictability of violence.
In another dissimilar but equally powerful comment on violence, Ssu-ma Ch'ien showed that even the descendants of a man of Confucius's integrity could not escape Emperor Wuti's willful power.
Unfortunately, even these pages present not much more than a sketchy and stereotyped narrative of cultural decline; only in its final section on the sacrificial music of Ssu-ma Ch'ien's own emperor Han Wu-ti [CHINESE TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (r.
15) Since the rest of the "Yueh shu" consists, in any case, only of derivative or--in the case of the introductory passages--stereotyped texts, the anachronisms in the only original passage have been taken as sufficient proof that the "Book on Music" cannot have come from Ssu-ma Ch'ien's hand.
Ssu-ma Ch'ien's contemporary, Emperor Wu of Hah (the alleged real allegorical target of some of Ssu-ma Ch'ien's sarcastic barbs), is examined in this volume by David Knechtges for his role as literary patron.
3 Ssu-ma Ch'ien, Shih-chi (Peking: Chung-hua shu-chu, 1959), 15.
historian Ssu-ma Piao wrote a Ling-ling hsien-hsien chuan" probably around 270-300, apparently a regionally oriented work.
We know of no specific source that was available to Ssu-ma Kuan yet not to us.
Within this framework Ssu-ma Ch'ien places names, information about these individuals, important events, and specific dates.
4) More recently, Hsu Fu-kuan [UNKNOWN TEXT OMITTED] has proposed that Ssu-ma Ch'ien used the tables to highlight key events.
If we turn to Ssu-ma Ch'ien's own writings, we find him ambivalent on the function of the chronological tables.
Yet there are other passages where Ssu-ma hints that the tables have a deeper meaning.