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The Mozi as an Evolving Text

Different Voices in Early Chinese Thought

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Edited by Carine Defoort and Nicolas Standaert

Mozi (ca. 479-381), known as the first outspoken critic of Confucius, is an important but neglected figure in early Chinese philosophy. The book Mozi, named after master Mo, was compiled in the course of the fifth - third centuries BCE. The seven studies included in the The Mozi as an Evolving Text take a fresh look at the Core Chapters, Dialogues, and Opening Chapters of the book Mozi. Rather than presenting a unified vision of Mohist thought, the contributions search for different voices in the text and for evolutions or tensions between its chapters. By analysing the Mozi as an evolving text, these studies not only contribute to the rejuvenation of Mozi studies, but also to the methodology of studying ancient Chinese texts.

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Young Kyun Oh

In Engraving Virtue, Young Kyun Oh investigates the publishing history of the Samgang Haengsil-to (Illustrated Guide to the Three Relations), a moral primer of Chosŏn (1392–1910), and traces the ways in which woodblock printed books contributed to shaping premodern Korea.
Originally conceived by the court as a book with which to instill in its society Confucian ethics encased in the stories of moral heroes and heroines as filial sons, loyal subjects, and devoted wives, the Samgang Haengsil-to embodies various aspects of Chosŏn society. With careful examinations of its various editions and historical documents, Oh presents how the life of this book reflected the complicated factors of the Chosŏn society and how it became more than just a reading material.

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Edited by Yuri Pines, Paul Goldin and Martin Kern

Ideology of Power and Power of Ideology in Early China explores ancient Chinese political thought during the centuries surrounding the formation of the empire in 221 BCE. The individual chapters examine the ideology and practices of legitimation, views of rulership, conceptualizations of ruler-minister relations, economic thought, and the bureaucratic administration of commoners.
The contributors analyze the formation of power relations from various angles, ranging from artistic expression to religious ideas, political rhetoric, and administrative action. They demonstrate the interrelatedness of historiography and political ideology and show how the same text served both to strengthen the ruler’s authority and moderate his excesses. Together, the chapters highlight the immense complexity of ancient Chinese political thought, and the deep tensions running within it.
Contributors include Scott Cook, Joachim Gentz, Paul R. Goldin, Romain Graziani, Martin Kern, Liu Zehua, Luo Xinhui, Yuri Pines, Roel Sterckx, and Charles Sanft.

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Michael Hunter

In Confucius Beyond the Analects, Michael Hunter challenges the standard view of the Analects as the earliest and most authoritative source of the teachings of Confucius. Arguing from a comprehensive survey of the thousands of extant sayings and stories from the early period, Hunter situates the compilation and rise of the Analects in the Western Han period (206 BCE–9 CE), roughly three centuries after the death of Confucius. As a study of the growth and development of the Confucius figure over the course of the early period, the book is also meant to serve as a roadmap for those interested in exploring the wealth and diversity of Confucius material beyond the Analects.