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VI. The Fruits of Tibetan Study
2003/10/27

As I have mentioned earlier, China's Tibetan study, in a broad sense, has a very long history. Its beginning can be traced back about two thousand years. However, only after the founding of new China was a modern and scientific system of Tibetan study established. The essential differences between the new and the traditional Tibetology are: first, today's Tibetan study analyzes and studies the Tibetan nationality and all facets of Tibetan society with the help of scientific theories; as a result, the traditional Tibetan study has been raised to a higher level. Second, new Tibetan study breaks with the traditional which stressed only five major subjects (technology, medicine, phonology, Hetuvidya and philosophy) and five minor subjects (poetry, ornate terns, prosody, opera and calendar). The new study also involves politics, economics, nationality, history, religion, philosophy, language, character, literature, art, law, social system, education, archaeology, folk custom, medicine, calendar, technology, etc. The social science subjects constitute the backbone, while natural science is also included, making for a comprehensive academic system. Owing to the necessary limits of this article, the fruits accomplished by new China's Tibetan study cannot be elaborated upon, one by one. The following is just a brief introduction.

According to incomplete statistics, in the past 45 years, articles contributed by China's Tibetan study circle totaled about six thousand. Some of them are published in special journals for Tibetan study, such as Tibetan Study in China , Study of Tibet, China's Tibet, New Development of Foreign Tibetan Study, Study of Tibet's Social Progress, Culture of the land of Snow, Study of Tibet's art, Education in Tibet and Buddhism in Tibet. Some are included in related academic journals and papers, and some have become books.

The academic works written by China's Tibetan study experts and scholars are numbered in the hundreds, including A Comprehensive History of Tibet, A Concise history of the Tibetan Nationality, On the System of Merging Politics and Religion in Tibet, A Brief History of the Relationship Between the Mongolian and Tibetan Nationalities, Government of the Qing Dynasty and Lamaism, Biographies of Dalai Lamas, Tibet is an Inseparable Part of China. Also included History of China's Resistance Against Foreign Interference in Tibet, History of Revolution in Tibet, Formation of Feudal Serfdom in Tibet, History of Religion in Tibet, The Development of Buddhism in Tibet, History of Tibetan Literature, A Brief Introduction to Tibetan Language, A General Account of Chinese and Tibetan Languages, Tibet of Modern China, and Tibet: Development and Reform Under a Nontypical Dualistic Structure. All these works answer questions about Tibet in various fields; in addition, dozens of reference books, including dictionaries and catalogues also were published. Especially important and catalogues also were published. Especially important is the Tibetan-Chinese Dictionary, produced by a working team involving nearly 60 Tibetological experts headed by late Pr. Zhang Yixuan. This dictionary has 53,000 entries of more than three million words in both Tibetan and Chinese languages. Among dictionaries of its kind published both at home and abroad, Tibetan-Chinese Dictionary contains the most entries. It is an encyclopedia-like reference book of very high academic values. After publication, it won plaudits from both domestic and overseas academicians, who consider it "a milestone in the development of Tibetan study."








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