Little is known about Sun Tzu (544-496 B.C.) and his life during the Warring States period after the decline of the Zhou dysnasty, but his classic, The Art of War, has been one of the central works of Chinese literature for 2500 years. John Minford studied Chinese at Oxford and at the Australian National University and has taught in China, Hong Kong, and New Zealand. He has translated numerous works from the Chinese, including the last two volumes of the Penguin Classics edition of Cao Xueqin's eighteenth-century novel The Story of the Stone and the martial-arts fiction of the contemporary Hong Kong novelist Louis Cha.
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