World Canonical Texts - List of 150

Shortly after I have built the first version of this site, I have started compiling lists for the key written traditions. I started with the South Asian one with 36 texts, followed by the CWANA list of 24 texts (essentially Islamicate texts except for those already included as South Asian), the East Asian list of 36 texts, and finally the Western list of 54 texts. These add together to form a list of 150 texts.


I have compiled some analysis of the total list in my blog, on the balance of the total list by traditions (conventionally defined, religiously defined, geographically defined) and by genres; by period; and by languages.


The concept of this list of 150 is very similar to the original list of 36. Other than the obvious difference of the length of the list, one other main difference is the change in the sense of balance -- in that it now gives more weight to the South Asian and CWANA traditions together, and relatively speaking the East Asian tradition is now given less weight. (In the List of 36, Chinese, Western and "The South" each has 12 texts.) The reason for making this change is mostly driven by current demographics considerations.


In this presentation of the list (navigation on the left), I have divided the list by 7 periods, with each period having between 16 and 27 texts each. The reason for this periodization is given in my blog entry. Within each period, the texts included are classified by langages or groups of languages. For simplicity, I have listed either the author or the title of the text. Only rarely (when a simple reference to each could be confusing) would I include both the name of the author and the text. Those interested in the full details of the text should refer to the lists by traditions (navigation at the top).


Lastly, for folks where a list of 150 is too long, shorter versions of the list that maintain its sense of balance can also be found in Derivative Lists.