Daily Archives: April 9, 2013

Barnwell Essay on “De” Published

Scott Barnwell’s essay “The Evolution of the Concept of De 德 in Early China,” has been published, as Sino-Platonic Paper 235. (Direct link to PDF here.) Congratulations, Scott! Here’s the first paragraph:

The present research paper explores the semantic space occupied by the ancient Chinese concept of De 德 over time. As Confucius observed in the epigraph, few people seemed to understand it in his day and many still do not today. In this paper, we will examine the various connotations conveyed by the word in the earliest written material — bronze inscriptions from the eleventh century B.C.E. — to the Han Dynasty (漢, 202 B.C.E. – 220 C.E.): roughly the first one thousand years. As it is a research paper, there will be no sustained argument defending some thesis, as is expected in a philosophy paper. It is rather a comprehensive, exploratory, educational tour of the semantic field of De in early Chinese literature. The critical reader should adjust his expectations accordingly.

Review: How Should One Live?: Comparing Ethics in Ancient China and Greco-Roman Antiquity

Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2013.04.15

Richard King, Dennis Schilling (ed.), How Should One Live?: Comparing Ethics in Ancient China and Greco-Roman Antiquity.   Berlin; Boston:  De Gruyter, 2011.  Pp. viii, 343.  ISBN 9783110252873.  $120.00.

Reviewed by Andrew B. Irvine, Maryville College (andrew.irvine@maryvillecollege.edu)

Preview the book.

The fifteen essays herein began as presentations at a symposium held in 2007 to discuss the good, virtue, universality, friendship, and politics. This volume groups the essays in five parts: Methods, Ethical Theory, China, Greece and Rome, and Comparisons. The latter three contain four essays each, the first has two, the second just one, and Parts I and II together add up to a mere 29 pages. Thus the unity of this volume is to be grasped not in terms of theory or method but in terms of topics – and, for better and worse, fairly loosely at that. Four indices allow precise navigation of the volume. A list of contributors would have been welcome.

Continue reading →