- This edition includes the following editor's introduction: China in the 19th century, the historical context in which "Village Life in China" was written
First published in 1889, "Village Life in China" is a comprehensive overview of Chinese village life at the end of the 19th Century , a marvellous presentation of rural China to foreign readers. American writer Arthur H. Smith wrote this work during his stay in China as a missionary, where he spent 54 years.
"Village Life in China" comes with expected prejudices from the writer's own social milieu, but the writing is clear, precise and articulate. At heart the author's real affection and sadness for China's poor and especially women comes through.