Zhu Guangqian and Benedetto Croce on Aesthetic Thought

With a Translation of the Wenyi xinlixue 文艺心理学 (The Psychology of Art and Literature)


In Zhu Guangqian and Benedetto Croce on Aesthetic Thought, Mario Sabattini analyses Croce’s influence on the aesthetic thought of Zhu Guangqian. Zhu Guangqian is one of the most representative figures of contemporary Chinese aesthetics. Since the '30s, he had an active role in China both on the literary and philosophical scenes, and, through his writings, he exerted an important influence in the moulding of numerous generations of intellectuals. Some of his works have been widely read, and they still provoke considerable interest in China, on the mainland as well as in Taiwan and Hong Kong. The volume also presents a revised translation of Zhu Guangqian’s Wenyi xinlixue (Psychology of Art and Literature).

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Biographical Note

Mario Sabattini (1944-2017), Emeritus Professor at the Department of Asian and North African Studies, Ca' Foscari University at Venice, focused mainly on Zhu Guangqian's aesthetic thought, and poetic in general. He has published extensively in Italian, English and Chinese. He has been a pioneer in the teaching of Thai language in Italy. From 1999 to 2003, Sabattini served as Cultural Counsellor at the Italian Embassy in the People’s Republic of China.

      Elisa Levi Sabattini, Ph.D. (2006), Ca’ Foscari University at Venice and INALCO at Paris, is Associate Professor of Chinese Philology at L’Orientale University of Naples and affiliated Research Fellow at the Frieberg Center for Asian Studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research focuses on the intellectual history of Early China, with special attention to Western Han political rhetoric within the construction of the monarchic system, ethical standards, early economic thought.

Table of contents

Thematic Bibliography of Mario Sabattini
Introduction: Zhu Guangqian and Croce

Zhu Guangqian: The Psychology of Art and Literature

1 Analysis of Aesthetic Experience: the Intuition of Form
2 Analysis of Aesthetic Experience: “Psychical Distance”
3 Analysis of Aesthetic Experience: the Ego-Object Identity (Empathy)
4 Analysis of Aesthetic Experience: Aesthetic Sense and Physiology (the Theory of “Inner Imitation”)
5 Some Erroneous Interpretations of Aesthetic Experience
6 Aesthetic Sense and Association of Ideas
7 Art and Morality: a Historical Review
8 Art and Morality: towards a Theory
9 The Beautiful and the Ugly in Nature: the Errors in Idealism and in Naturalism
10 What Do We Call “Beautiful”
11 A Criticism of the Crocian Aesthetic: The Problems of Communication and Value
12 Play and the Origin of Art
13 Artistic Creation: Imagination and Inspiration
14 Artistic Creation: Genius and Human Effort



All interested in Chinese aesthetic thought generally and Zhu Guangqian more specifically.

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