This post (and the many substantive comments) on “Nouns, verbs, and ontological metaphors” may be of interest; it discusses literary Sinitic and Mandarin vs. English; Sinitic vs. Indo-European modes of expression; characters vs. words; Chinese philosophy; mass nouns.
SUNY Press has published Newell Ann Van Auken’s The Commentarial Transformation of the Spring and Autumn. More information here, and after the break.
Fourth Annual Stanford-Berkeley Graduate Student Conference on Premodern Chinese Humanities
A joint organizing committee of Stanford University and UC Berkeley faculty announces the Fourth Annual Stanford-Berkeley Graduate Student Conference on Premodern Chinese Humanities, to be held on Friday, April 21 and Saturday, April 22, 2017, at UC Berkeley. This national meeting of graduate students specializing in premodern Chinese studies aims to bring together young scholars from geographically distant institutions to present and discuss innovative research on China.
Donald Sturgeon reports that thanks to the support of Harvard Yenching Library, over 5 million pages of scanned materials from the Yenching Library collection have been added to the Library section of the ctext.org site, including high quality images from the Chinese Rare Books Collection. See http://ctext.org/library.pl?if=en&collection=139. Approximate transcriptions created using the ctext.org OCR procedure have also been added to the Wiki, making these materials full-text searchable. In future he hopes to collaborate with other libraries to include materials from their Chinese language collections.
The Tang Center for Early China, founded at Columbia University in 2015, is dedicated to the advancement of the understanding of the richness and importance of early Chinese civilization as a part of a broader common human heritage. It is committed to doing so through both solid scholarship and broad public outreach. It does this, in part, through programs supporting fellowships and conferences, as well as through publications. A useful overview of funding opportunities is here; and for the center’s website, see here.
The latest issue of Frontiers of Philosophy in China has been published, with a special focus on the challenge that excavated texts pose to Chinese philosophical research today. Until the end of August, the full issue (full text) is available here to read or download. The full Table of Contents follows.
The Society for the Study of Early China is pleased to announce its Fifth Annual Conference, which will take place in Toronto on Thursday, 16 March 2017. Like our previous meetings, this one will take place in conjunction with the Association for Asian Studies’ Annual Conference. Registration for the AAS event is not required to attend the SSEC meeting.
A friendly reminder to be sure to cite ctext.org for those who utilize it.
ctext.org is an invaluable resource and asset to the field. It allows us all a free, quick, and easy way to look up texts we see cited, as well as the ability to look up concordance references. The field is tremendously better off with ctext. This is why it is very important to give the site and its creator/editor, Donald Sturgeon, formal credit in bibliographies, forewords, and footnotes, as per standard academic practice. I am moved to say this because I’ve lately become aware of works that look to be utilizing ctext.org, but fail to formally attribute it in bibliographic material. Instruction on how to cite ctext.org texts can be found here: http://ctext.org/faq/cite.
In 2014, the first “Conference on Middle Period Chinese Humanities” was convened at Harvard, gathering together scholars working on the period covering the Tang through the Ming dynasties in all fields. I had the good fortune to attend, and found it very stimulating — if somewhat short of philosophers. The second such conference has now been announced, to be held at Leiden University, September 14-17, 2017. Those interested in participating are asked to submit an abstract of 300 to 500 words (in English or Chinese) and a CV by October 1, 2016 to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Those whose abstracts are accepted will be notified by December 1, 2016. For more information, see here.
Palgrave MacMillan has published Wang Zhongjiang’s Order in Early Chinese Excavated Texts, translated by M. Tadd. More information here.
Someone said to Confucius, “Master, why don’t you engage in government?” The Master said, “The Book of Documents says, ‘Filial! But be filial, and a friend to your brothers, thus contributing to government.’ Why then do that other kind of ‘engaging in government’?”
I’ll suppose for the sake of argument that the reported exchange is authentic, and argue that it is not significant evidence of Confucius’ views. Confucius is not aiming to communicate his views here.
Here are some reasons to think that Youzi did not regard family as the root of humanity or of the Way. (I used to think he did.)
Most of my argument focuses on defending a view held by Soothill, Leys, Chin, and maybe Lau and Slingerland: that by 弟 in Analects 1.2, Youzi meant elder-respect, a virtue commonly associated specifically with life outside the family. It would follow that according to 1.2, only one of the two parts of the root of humanity is specifically a family virtue. If 孝 and 弟 have something relevantly in common for Youzi, family isn’t it.
Did Confucius think that if one of us has general virtue, or some particular virtue such as courage or filial piety, that general or particular virtue will have a substantial tendency to spread directly to the people around her, even if she holds no government position?
Here I’ll survey Confucius’ statements in the Analects and conclude that the answer is No. Confucius probably did not hold that view. (I gave the opposite reading in both my published papers on Chinese philosophy.)
The Princeton Early Text Cultures Workshop will bring together 11 graduate students from the USA and the UK, specialists in Early China, Mesopotamia, Egypt, Ancient Rome and Greece, to discuss similarities and differences in the patterns of textual formation and textual practices in early civilizations. These patterns define the social role of texts, the composition of their audience, the repertoire of text types, and the paths towards the development of creative literature.
What: Graduate Workshop
When: April 16 and 17, 2016
Where: 202 Jones Hall, Princeton University
Attached here is a PDF with an open call for six doctoral student positions in a research project on narrative modes of classical, medieval and modern historiography in India, China, and Tibet. The project, which is funded by the European Research Council, is running at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. The positions are in classical Indology, modern Indian studies, medieval Indo-Persian studies, medieval Tibetan Studies, classical-medieval Sinology, and modern Chinese studies. The three-year positions are tuition-free and come with a small stipend. The application deadline is March 31.
I have recently become aware of Mark Edward Lewis’s on-line classical Chinese course. Looks valuable!
Hilde De Weerdt writes: A belated new year present for all who work with classical Chinese texts.
The MARKUS platform has gone through a major update during the past few months. You can now create an account, upload content, add customized tags and comments and notes of different kinds, select which reference sites you want to display, convert Chinese to western dates, and, last but not least, import text directly from your ctext.org account. We have added new videos to show most of these features under “HowTo.” More will be added and Chinese translations of these will be added as well.
Edward Shaughnessy (University of Chicago) who will be Halls-Bascom Visiting Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in early April 2016 will hold a Workshop on Recently Excavated Texts on 7 April 2016 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. (location on the UW Campus still to be arranged). Zhi Chen (Hong Kong Baptist University) will serve as discussant. It is hoped that scholars from other “neighboring universities” will consider joining the Workshop. Although we have no travel funds, there will be a light-dinner reception following the Workshop to allow the discussion to continue into the evening. For further information please contact Bill Nienhauser (email@example.com).
Palgrave Macmillan has published Harry Miller’s complete translation of The Gongyang Commentary on the Spring and Autumn Annals. It is available as hardcover or eBook. The publisher’s description follows; check out the website for preview access to some of the book.
Queen’s College (Oxford) has recently announced a Junior Research Fellow in Manuscript and Text Cultures, and invites applications from graduates of any university for election to a three-year post-doctoral position as a Junior Research Fellow in Manuscript and Text Cultures, with a research specialism in knowledge-production and text-transmission in pre-modern literate societies. See here for more information.
Harvard University Press has published Jaeyoon Song’s important new book on Song dynasty political thought and the role of the classics (in particular, the Zhou Li) in shaping politics. Congratulations, Jaeyoon!
A major new book is about to be released: the 704-page Luxuriant Gems of the Spring and Autumn (春秋繁露), attributed to Dong Zhongshu; edited and translated by Sarah A. Queen and John S. Major (Columbia University Press). This is a tremendous accomplishment, and should help to further open up post-classical philosophy to broader attention and analysis.
The Ten Thousand Rooms Project at Yale may well be of interest to readers. Funded by the Mellon Foundation and Yale, the project makes available sophisticated tools for on-line, collaborative projects to annotate and/or translate pre-modern Chinese texts. More information is at the project’s website.
Early China 38 (2015) is now in print. To subscribe to Early China and become a member of the Society go to http://journals.cambridge.org/action/memServHome?name=SSECHome.
EARLY CHINA 38 (2015)
TABLE OF CONTENTS
I am very pleased to announce the publication of John Makeham’s outstanding translation of Xiong Shili’s huge influential New Treatise on the Uniqueness of Consciousness 新唯識論. This is the first East Asia-related volume in Yale University Press’s World Thought in Translation series. Congratulations, John!
Call For Proposals: The Princeton Early Text Cultures Workshop
What: Graduate Workshop
When: April 16th 2016
Where: 202 Jones Hall, Princeton University
Organized by Mercedes Valmisa (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I know that many readers use the excellent Pleco dictionary on their smartphones, so you’ll be happy to know that Paul Kroll’s outstanding Student’s Dictionary of Classical and Medieval Chinese is now available as a Pleco ad-on.
A note from Keith Knapp:
This is just a quick reminder that the deadline for sending in proposals for the Southeast Early China Roundtable annual meeting is fast approaching. It is this Saturday, August 1.
News from Donald Sturgeon, who has used optical character recognition to provide extraordinary searchable access to pre-modern Chinese texts online:
A major update to the site has been made by applying OCR to over ten million pages of transmitted texts stored in the Library, linking scanned texts where possible to digital editions that follow them. Over 3000 existing texts have been successfully linked, allowing side-by-side display and textual searching of scanned texts.
Additionally, around ten thousand new texts and editions have also been transcribed for the first time using OCR. While these transcriptions inevitably contain many errors, they make it possible for the first time to search the scanned texts and immediately locate information within them. All newly transcribed texts have been added to the Wiki – please help by correcting errors when using these resources.
For further details, please see the OCR instructions.