Conceptualizing Friendship in Time and Place


The concept of friendship is more easily valued than it is described: this volume brings together reflections on its meaning and practice in a variety of social and cultural settings in history and in the present time, focusing on Asia and the Western, Euro-American world.
The extension of the group in which friendship is recognized, and degrees of intimacy (whether or not involving an erotic dimension) and genuine appreciation may vary widely. Friendship may simply include kinship bonds—solidarity being one of its more general characteristics. In various contexts of travelling, migration, and a dearth of offspring, friendship may take over roles of kinship, also in terms of care.

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Carla Risseeuw, anthropologist (PhD Nijmegen, 1988), emeritus Professor Gender Studies, Leiden University. She published on British colonial history in Sri Lanka, and, with Indian colleagues, on the Dutch welfare state and on Ageing in South Asia and Western Europe. She studied the social consequences of contracting leprosy in East Africa, and made several ethnographic films.

Marlein van Raalte (PhD Leiden, 1986) is lecturer in Ancient Greek Language and Literature at Leiden University. She published on Greek metre, wrote a commentary on Theophrastus¹ Metaphysics and co-edited the volume Protagoras of Abdera: The Man, His Measure (Brill, 2013).
Editorial Foreword
Andrew Fitz-Gibbon
List of Contributors

Introduction: Conceptualizing Friendship in Time and Place
Carla Risseeuw and Marlein van Raalte

SECTION : Classical Asian Sources and Traditions

1 The Chinese Concept of Friendship: Confucian Ethics and the Literati Narratives of Pre-Modern China
Ping Wang
2 The Concept of Friendship in the Jātaka Tales
Ranjini Obeyesekere

SECTION : Western/European Traditions

3 Friendship after Money: The Case of Classical Greece
Tazuko van Berkel
4 The Road to Wisdom: A New Conceptualization of Friendship in Fourth-Century bce Athens
Albert Joosse
5 Historical Moments of Friendship Ideals: David & Jonathan, Montaigne, Adam Smith
Allan Silver
6 Friendship in the European Enlightenment: The Rationalization of Intimacy?
Adam Sutcliffe

SECTION 3: Friendship in Contemporary East and West

7 The Utility of ‘Translated’ Friendship for the Sinophone World: Past and Present
Wei-cheng Chu
8 Intimate Relationships between Women as Romantic Love in Modern Japan
Kanako Akaeda
9 Impartiality, Close Friendships and the Confucian Tradition
Andrew Lambert
10 The Performance of Friendship in Contemporary India
Nita Kumar
11 Shades of Friendship among Thai Women in the Netherlands
Panitee Brown Suksomboon
12 On Family, Friendship and the Need for ‘Cultural Fuss’: Changing Trajectories of Family and Friendship in the Netherlands
Carla Risseeuw
13 Civil Friendship: A Proposal for Legal Bonds Based on Friendship and Care
Natascha Gruver

Index Nominum
General Index
Anyone interested in the concept of friendship, from a historical, philosophical, anthropological, and social point of view.
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