Author Archives: karynlai

New Book: Cultivating a Good Life in Early Chinese and Ancient Greek Philosophy

Part I: Harmony, Balance, Beauty: Understanding Conceptions of Cultivation
1. Cultivation and Harmony: Plato and Confucius (Rick Benitez, University of Sydney, Australia)
2. Cultivating Noble Simplicity: Plato (L.M.J. Coulson, University of Sydney, Australia)
3. The Beauty Ladder and the Mind-heart Excursion: Plato and Zhuangzi (Wang Keping, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing)
4. Awareness and Spontaneity: Three Perspectives in the Zhuangzi (Lisa Raphals, University of California, Riverside, USA)
5. Understanding “Dao’s Patterns”: Han Fei (Barbara Hendrischke, Sydney University, Australia)

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Chinese philosophy resources for teaching

Hi all, I compiled a list of Chinese philosophy resources for teaching for the APA Blog. Please feel free to add to it, though bear in mind that the list is not for full-semester Chinese philosophy courses but specifically for non-expert instructors who wish to introduce some glimpses into Chinese philosophy.  The discussions shouldn’t be too technical and must generally be accessible for undergraduate students.

PhD scholarship in Chinese-Western Comparative Philosophy: Comparative Epistemology. AUD$50,000 per year over 4 years plus fee waiver

PhD scholarship in Chinese-Western Comparative Philosophy
University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia

We invite applications from prospective PhD students to work on the research topic below. The scholarship will run over 4 years, and the following will be provided:

– Tuition fee waiver
– AUD$40,000 p.a. stipend (tax-free)
– Up to AUD$10,000 p.a. career development funds

PhD Research Project Title
Epistemology enlarged: knowledge as practice in Chinese and Western philosophy

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Suggestions needed for ‘harmony’ in Confucian thought

I’m seeking suggestions for scenarios, accounts or conversations where ‘harmony’ between self and elements of social/political life may be detected. I’m looking at texts associated with the Confucian tradition, including the histories, from Han and before. I am aware this is an interpretive matter and, at this stage, I’m keen to keep the casting net as wide as possible. One quick example that comes to mind is the Lunyu‘s 和而不同 or the Zuozhuan‘s soup (左传·昭公二十年). But there will be much more beyond quips like this. I’m also keen to look at accounts where terms like 和 (or ones that suggest it, e.g. 由 (A1.12) or 從 (A4.18)) are not present but where the idea of harmony – and its implications – emerges from the turn of events described in the passage.

Any ideas would be much appreciated! Thanks in advance.

Karyn Lai

Australasian Philosophical Review: Call for Abstracts

Call for abstracts

Australasian Philosophical Review (APR), Vol 1 Issue 3:
Comparative Ancient Chinese and Ancient Greek philosophy

Author: G. E. R. Lloyd, “The Fortunes of Analogy”

Invited commentaries from: Lisa Raphals, Adriane Rini, Raoul Mortley

Committee: Karyn Lai, Loy Hui Chieh, Michaelis Michael


The APR is seeking proposals for commentaries on Professor G.E.R. Lloyd’s article, “The Fortunes of Analogy”.

Abstracts should be brief (100-500 words), stating clearly the aspects of the target article that will be discussed, together with an indication of the line that will be taken. More details are available at the APR website:

Those who are interested should register as commentators to view Professor Lloyd’s paper and the invited commentaries.

Abstract submissions for Volume 1 Issue 3 should be sent to by 15 October 2016.

Invitations to write commentaries of 2000-3000 words will be issued on 31st October 2016. Full-length commentaries will be due on 15th January 2017.

If you have any questions, please contact Karyn Lai