Legendarily, 2200 years old and 4300 miles long, the Great Wall of China seems to make an overwhelmingly confident physical statement about China's age-old sense of itself as an advanced civilization anxious to draw a line between itself and the 'barbarians' at its borders. But, behind the Wall's intimidating exterior - and the myths that have built up around it - lies a complex history of China's view of the outside world, and itself. In this book, Julia Lovell explores the conquests and cataclysms of the Chinese empire over the past 3000 years with wonderful style.
JULIA LOVELL was born in 1975 and lectures in Chinese history and literature at Cambridge, where she is one of the university's youngest teachers. She regularly writes about China in the press and recently translated the prize-winning Chinese novel, A Dictionary of Maqiao She is married to the writer Robert Macfarlane.