16th Annual Midwest Conference on Chinese Thought
Wright State University
30 April-1 May 2021
The Midwest Conference on Chinese Thought was created to foster dialogue and interaction between scholars and students working on Chinese thought across different disciplines and through a variety of approaches. Submissions are invited for papers on any aspect of Chinese thought as well as papers dealing with comparative issues that engage Chinese perspectives.
This year’s conference will be held virtually on Friday, April 30 and Saturday, May 1 and hosted by Wright State University. Our keynote speaker will be Robin R. Wang, Professor of Philosophy at Loyola Marymount University.
Professor Wang will present “Dao of Rou 柔 (Suppleness): Proprioceptive Knowledge and Its Epistemological Value in Early Daoism”:
Through Chinese intellectual history, early Daoism, a Dao-based and inspired teaching and practice, has been considered the philosophy of rou 柔 (suppleness, pliant, yielding, softness), which the Daodejing couples with water, the infant, and the feminine. A popular Chinese binary expression of culture, gen 根 (root/foundation) and hun 魂 (soul/spirit), takes Dao as the root of Daoist teaching and rou as a spirit of Lao-Zhuang. However, rou has often been understood only as de (德) moral virtue or shu (术) strategy, something more practical than conceptual. This talk will respond to this theoretical gap and argue for rou as a form of proprioceptive awareness or bodily knowledge that shapes a cognitive style and an epistemological stance to guide our rational effort, illumination, and well-being. More importantly, this rou style of knowing embodies the epistemic value, such as intellectual humility, openness, receptivity and resilience, for a cognitive success.
Similar to previous conferences, we anticipate selecting 12-16 papers for presentation. For consideration submit a 1-page abstract to Judson Murray at firstname.lastname@example.org by January 31, 2021 for blind review. For more information, visit the conference website here.