This workshop celebrates the partnership between the Berggruen Institute and the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, thereby also taking advantage of the presence of the first group of Berggruen Fellows at Harvard. The topic of the workshop, also related to a major concern of the Berggruen Institute, is “Perspectives on Chinese Thought in the World.” Some of the presenters work on China in a rather straightforward way, others don’t, but China, and thus Chinese thought, concerns us all, and increasingly so. One way or another, the talks will address how it does. Advance reading of papers is not expected, though papers are available for some of the talks (upon request).
On February 9, 2017, the workshop convened for a successful session, featuring Viren Murthy, Tongdong Bai, and Sungmoon Kim, before the organizers were compelled to postpone the afternoon panels due to the onset of a blizzard. These panels have now been rescheduled as a featured event that will kick off the Center’s 30th Anniversary Celebration, May 4-6, 2017. More details are here.
The Manchester Centre for Political Theory will host a workshop on Confucian political theory on September 11-13. The deadline to apply is May 26. Graduate students and faculty emeriti will, upon acceptance, be able to apply to the Centre for funding. More information is here.
Shortly before the next American Political Science Association meeting in San Francisco, the organization will host dissertation workshops, one of which is devoted to students working in comparative political theory. The workshops group six ABD students together with two scholars. The deadline to apply is May 15. The workshops will take place on August 30, the day before the main APSA meeting commences. More information is here.
The next session of the Columbia University Seminar on Neo-Confucian Studies will convene Friday, April 21st, from 3:30 to 5:30pm in the Heyman Center for the Humanities at Columbia University.
The speaker will be Professor Kim Sungmoon, and his presentation is titled: “The Confucian Value Theory of Criminal Punishment.” If you would like to attend, please contact rapporteur Zach Berge-Becker for a copy of the paper.
Book talk with Melissa Williams, Co-Editor of East Asian Perspectives on Political Legitimacy: Bridging the Empirical-Normative Divide
Monday, April 3, 2017, 4:15pm to 5:30pm; Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Suite 200N, 124 Mt Auburn Street, Cambridge
Join us for a discussion with Melissa Williams, Professor of Political Science, and founding Director of the Centre for Ethics at the University of Toronto, Senior Visiting Scholar at the Harvard Kennedy School and Co-Editor of “East Asian Perspectives on Political Legitimacy: Bridging the Empirical-Normative Divide“, and Tongdong Bai, the Dongfang Chair Professor of Philosophy at Fudan University in China and Berggruen Fellow at Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics. Archon Fung, Academic Dean and Ford Foundation Professor of Democracy and Citizenship, HKS, will moderate.
A new essay called “In Defense of Hierarchy,” the joint responsibility of several of us but largely written by Julian Baggini, has been published at Aeon. It is the fruit of discussions at a conference sponsored by the Berggruen Philosophy and Culture Center, and is an interesting example of comparative or what some folks are now calling cosmopolitan philosophy. Enjoy!
My review of Sungmoon Kim, Public Reason Confucianism: Democratic Perfectionism and Constitutionalism in East Asia (Cambridge, 2016) recently appeared in Ethics 127:3. The first paragraph of the review follows. A pre-publication version of the whole review is available here.
Continue reading “Angle reviews Kim, Public Reason Confucianism”
Loubna El Amine will speak at the National University of Singapore on March 23; her topic is “The Problem of Political Order in Classical Confucian Thought.” Details here.
Manchester Workshops for Political Theory, Monday 11 September to Wednesday 13 September, 2017
Conveners: Elton Chan (Yale-NUS College), Larry Lai (University of Hong Kong) and Baldwin Wong (Chinese University of Hong Kong)
Venue: Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester
Abstracts of 500-1000 words, prepared for blind review, are due by 26th May, 2017; see below for further details.
In recent years there has been an increasing interest among Anglo-American political theorists in comparing the diverse ways of how the Western and Chinese thinkers address political issues.
Continue reading “CFP: MANCEPT workshop: Confucian Political Theory”
Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews
2017.03.05 View this Review Online View Other NDPR Reviews
Eirik Lang Harris, The Shenzi Fragments: A Philosophical Analysis and Translation, Columbia University Press, 2016, 173pp., $55.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780231177665.
Reviewed by Franklin Perkins, University of Hawai’i at Manoa
Continue reading “Perkins Reviews Harris, The Shenzi Fragments”
Thursday, February 23, 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Liberalism, Globalization, Populism and Nationalism in the World Today
Wang Hui, Professor of literature and history at Tsinghua University
David Armitage, Lloyd C. Blankfein Professor of History, Harvard University
Malika Zeghal, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Professor in Contemporary Islamic Thought and Life, Harvard University
Mahdav Khosla, B. R. Ambedkar Academic Fellow, Columbia Law School and Ph.D. candidate in political theory, Harvard University.
James Kloppenberg, Charles Warren Professor of American History, Harvard University
Moderator: Peter Bol, Vice Provost for Advances in Learning and the Charles H. Carswell Professor of East Asian Languages and Civilizations, Harvard University
Sponsored by the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University
S010, Tsai Auditorium, 1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge
I have recently completed a draft chapter, titled “Human Rights and Chinese Tradition,” for the Handbook on human rights in China being edited by Sarah Biddulph and Joshua Rosenzweig. Anyone interested can take a look; I have uploaded it to my personal archive here. Comments are very welcome!
I will give a lecture titled “Confucian Leadership Meets Confucian Democracy” at the Chinese University of Hong Kong on Monday, February 13, at 4:30pm. All are welcome, and details are here.
POSTDOC OPPORTUNITY at the LSE: for someone working in transcultural Asian humanities. Comparative political theorists of East Asia VERY welcome!
Continue reading “PostDoc in Transcultural Asian Humanities”
There will be two events held at Hong Kong University on February 14: a Symposium on Sungmoon Kim’s Public Reason Confucianism and a Roundtable on the Future of Confucian Political Philosophy. These events are open to all, though we request that you register. The poster announcing these events is here, and details (and link for registration) is here. Speakers at the Symposium are Stephen ANGLE, Joseph CHAN, Sungmoon KIM, and Franz MANG; speakers at the Roundtable are:
Stephen ANGLE, Wesleyan University; Berggruen Fellow 2016-17
Elton CHAN, Yale-NUS College
Joseph CHAN, The University of Hong Kong
CI Jiwei, The University of Hong Kong
FAN Ruiping, City University of Hong Kong
HUANG Yong, Chinese University of Hong Kong
JIANG Yi-Huah, City University of Hong Kong
Sungmoon KIM, City University of Hong Kong; Berggruen Fellow 2016-17
If you are in Hong Kong, please join us!
Cambridge University Press has published East Asian Perspectives on Political Legitimacy: Bridging the Empirical-Normative Divide, edited by Joseph Chan, Doh Chuli Shin, and Melissa S. Williams. More details and table of contents here.
Huang Yushun 黄玉顺 is one of the most prolific and creative Confucian thinkers in China today, and one of his books has been published in English translation: Voice From the East: The Chinese Theory of Justice (Paths International, 2016). More details are here.
For anyone who’ll be in Beijing on the 20th, you are welcome to my lecture that evening, the title of which is “从进步儒学的角度看社会压迫 [Social Oppression as Viewed by Progressive Confucianism”].” Details follow. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
Continue reading “Angle lecture in Beijing Sunday 11/20”
The Boston University Confucian Association is sponsoring a lecture by Prof. Tongdong BAI of Fudan University on September 28, 2016. The topic is “A New Confucian Tianxia Model and Its Superiority to the Nation-State and Liberal Models.” Please see here for more details.
Julian Baggini hosts a podcast looking at Confucian perspectives on the relationship and tensions between hierarchy and equality. Julian’s guests are Stephen C. Angle, Joseph C.W. Chan, Michael Puett, and Justin Tiwald. Produced in association with the Berggruen Philosophy and Culture Centre.
See here for a video in which Leigh Jenco gives an overview of her book Changing Referents: Learning Across Space and Time in China and The West (OUP, 2015).
Upcoming conference: “Political Theory in the East Asian Context: Beyond West-Centrism” at Hong Kong CityU from 3-4 June 2016 (Friday to Saturday). All are welcome. More details here.
CALL FOR PAPERS: TRAVELLING THEORISTS/THEORIES
SOAS UNIVERSITY OF LONDON 30 JUNE-1 JULY
SOAS CENTRE FOR COMPARATIVE POLITICAL THOUGHT AND THE LONDON CPT RESEARCH GROUP
This workshop explores the myriad and perhaps mysterious ways in which theory travels. The phrase ‘travelling theory’ already puts both terms under question. What is travelling? How is it travelling? Whence is it travelling? And who produces theory and enables it to travel? The workshop is about articulating critical questions about producers, users, and diffusers of theory as well as the ethics, aesthetics, and politics of intellectual production.
Continue reading “CFP: Traveling Theorists/Theories”
The editors of a volume under contract to be entitled Routledge History of Human Rights are very keen to find potential chapters that deal with Chinese and/or East Asian perspectives on human rights. I attach the call here. Please respond directly to the editors.
Sungmoon Kim’s new book, Public Reason Confucianism: Democratic Perfectionism and Constitutionalism in East Asia (Cambridge, 2016) has just been published. Congratulations, Sungmoon! Here are links to the CUP website and Amazon. Cambridge has also made available a form that anyone can use to get a 25% discount; click here. Here is the book’s description:
Recent proposals concerning Confucian meritocratic perfectionism have justified Confucian perfectionism in terms of political meritocracy. In contrast, ‘Confucian democratic perfectionism’ is a form of comprehensive Confucian perfectionism that can accommodate a plurality of values in civil society. It is also fully compatible with core values of democracy such as popular sovereignty, political equality, and the right to political participation. Sungmoon Kim presents ‘public reason Confucianism’ as the most attractive option for contemporary East Asian societies that are historically and culturally Confucian. Public reason Confucianism is a particular style of Confucian democratic perfectionism in which comprehensive Confucianism is connected with perfectionism via a distinctive form of public reason. It calls for an active role for the democratic state in promoting a Confucian conception of the good life, at the heart of which are such core Confucian values as filial piety and ritual propriety.
Leigh Jenco (LSE) will be speaking at Harvard on May 2 at 4:00pm. Her title is “How Should We Use the Chinese Past?: Non-Western Histories of Thought in a Global Age.” More information here.
Thanks to the enormous help of my research assistant Max Fong, I now have a site at which many of my publications are archived and can be downloaded. We will try to add anything currently missing over the next few weeks. Because of copyright policies, in most cases these are the final, edited versions but not the actual published versions. I am sure that many folks out there are way ahead of me in putting a site like this together; please feel free to share that info!
Loubna El Amine discusses Confucianism, human rights, and related topics–and even mentions this blog–in her recent Washington Post piece, “Are ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’ Western colonial exports? No. Here’s why.”
Xinyu Li reviews Leigh Jenco, Changing Referents: Learning Across Space and Time in China and the West (OUP, 2015) here.
The new issue of Perspectives on Politics (14:1, March 2016), available here, contains several articles of interest:
- Loubna El Amine, “Beyond East and West: Reorienting Political Theory through the Prism of Modernity”
- An extended discussion of Daniel Bell’s The China Model, with articles by Baogang He, Victoria Tin-bor Hui, Leigh Jenco, Andrew Nathan, Lynette Ong, Thomas Pangle, and Joseph Wang.
Loubna El Amine, who earned her PhD from the Department of Politics at Princeton and has been teaching (comparative) political theory at Georgretown, has recently accepted an offer to move to Northwestern University, starting in Fall 2016. Congratulations, Loubna!
Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews
2016.01.17 View this Review Online View Other NDPR Reviews
Loubna El Amine, Classical Confucian Political Thought: A New Interpretation, Princeton University Press, 2015, 218pp., $39.95 (hbk), ISBN 9780691163048.
Reviewed by Eric L. Hutton, University of Utah
This book’s subtitle, A New Interpretation, provides a convenient starting point for discussing its aims, methods, strengths and weaknesses. The interpretation offered aims to be new not merely in the sense that it argues for a view that previously has not (or not much) been defended by other scholars, but moreover and especially in that it aims to challenge claims made by other scholars. So described, the book might sound like it is primarily for specialists in ancient Chinese thought, and while Loubna El Amine never identifies her target audience very clearly, at points she also provides basic background information that would allow non-specialists to follow along. The book is thus potentially of interest to non-specialists as well, such as Western political philosophers and theorists who know little about Confucian political thought and want a compact and accessible discussion of Confucianism that speaks to their interests. This review will focus on those aspects in which the book addresses a specialist audience, but my discussion is equally for the benefit of non-specialists. As will become apparent from the reservations I express below, the value of the book for non-specialists needs to be carefully qualified, in a way to be explained at the end.
Continue reading “Hutton Reviews El Amine, Classical Confucian Political Thought”
Bai Tongdong of Fudan University has review Daniel Bell’s The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy (Princeton University Press, 2015) at NDPR. Read on for the link and for the full review.
Continue reading “Bai Review Bell, The China Model”
Loubna El Amine has published a review (available here) of Fred Dallmayr’s Being in the World: Dialogue and Cosmopolis (Lexington: University of Kentucky Press, 2013). In light of El Amine’s remarks at the end of the review about the central place still occupied in Dallmayr’s theorizing by Western theory, it may be fruitful to compare with Leigh Jenco’s new book.
I am happy to announce the publication of Leigh Jenco’s new book; congratulations!
Leigh Jenco, Changing Referents: Learning Across Space and Time in China and the West (Oxford University Press, 2015): 304 Pages; ISBN: 9780190263812
Globalization has brought together otherwise disparate communities with distinctive and often conflicting ways of viewing the world. Yet even as these phenomena have exposed the culturally specific character of the academic theories used to understand them, most responses to this ethnocentricity fall back on the same parochial vocabulary they critique. Against those who insist our thinking must return always to the dominant terms of Euro-American modernity, I argue and demonstrate that methods for understanding cultural others can take theoretical guidance from those very bodies of thought typically excluded by political and social theory.
Continue reading “New Book: Jenco, Changing Referents”
I am very happy to pass on the news that the Chinese translation of my book Contemporary Confucian Political Philosophy: Toward Progressive Confucianism (Polity, 2013) has been published by Jiangxi People’s Press, as 《当代儒家政治哲学：进步儒学发凡》. More information, including the Preface to the Chinese Edition, can be found here. In case anyone is interested in an English-language version of this new Preface, I will post it below.
Continue reading “Chinese Translation of Contemporary Confucian Political Philosophy”
Political theorist Loubna El Amine, author of a recent book on Confucian political thinking, has written a provocative reflection on “What is it Like to be Lebanese and to Work on China.”
More debate around Daniel Bell’s book The China Model (Princeton, 2015): Andrew Nathan’s “Beijing Bull: The Bogus China Model” and Bell’s reply, “Facts and Values: On China’s Political System.”
Democracy & China: Philosophical-Political Reflections
One-Day Workshop on Themes from the Work of Jiwei Ci
November 13, 2015, 9:30AM – 5:15 PM
Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, Seminar Room
124 Mt. Auburn Street, 5th floor (use entrance on Mt. Auburn Street)
Continue reading “Harvard Conference: “Democracy & China: Philosophical-Political Reflections””
An embarrassment of riches! This coming Thursday, interested folks in the Boston area can choose from the following two options (Prof. Ci’s lecture is part of the series he has been giving at Harvard; see here; see also here for a related conference on Friday):
Thursday, November 12, 4:30 p.m.
A Realistic Utopia for China, Democratic or Otherwise
Ci Jiwei, Professor, Department of Philosophy, University of Hong Kong
Commentator: Stephen Angle, Professor of Philosophy and Mansfield Freeman Professor of East Asian Studies, Wesleyan University
Harvard Law School, Austin Hall, The Morgan Courtroom
Thursday, November 12, 5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
The Values of Spontaneity
Professor Philip J. Ivanhoe, Chair Professor of East Asian and Comparative Philosophy & Religion, City University of Hong Kong; Director of the Center for East Asian and Comparative Philosophy (CEACOP); Director of the Laboratory on Korean Philosophy in Comparative Perspectives
This talk will discuss two Chinese views of spontaneity found in Confucian and Daoist texts from the pre-Qin (before 221 B.C.E.) period.
The Daniel C Morrissey ’88 and Chanannait Paisansathan, MD Lecture Series in Asian Studies, Boston College
Fulton 511, Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Ave., Chestnut Hill, MA
When I was in Taiwan last week, friends there recommended that I should look at the new book 《公民儒學》 (Civic Confucianism) by Norman Teng 鄧育仁, recently published by National Taiwan University Press. Professor Teng, who received his PhD a number of years ago from Southern Illinois University, is now a researcher at the Academia Sinica; I had a chance to meet him and talk with him at length about his book and future research projects while I was there. The book is fascinating. He proposes that in this age of democratic pluralism, a “civic philosophical 公民哲學” approach should be to seek serious dialogue among philosophical traditions, in the spirit of egalitarian democracy. In particular, he is interested in how we should think about Confucians and Confucianism in a pluralistic, democratic society like Taiwan. His book combines a number of innovative methodological approaches (e.g., paying special attention to the ways that early Confucians use narrative reflection and the reframing of premises, rather than explicit deductive logic, which techniques can then be applied in the present day as well) in order to explore a particular means of developing a form of democratic Confucianism today. He draws extensively on John Rawls in some chapters; that, plus his emphasis on a rootedness in the actual experience of Taiwan’s democratic society, suggests some very interesting comparisons between Teng’s work and that of Sungmoon Kim (whose work on modern Confucian democracy is rooted in the experience of South Korea). In any event, well worth serious attention for those of us thinking about the future of Confucianism.
Studies in Comparative Political Theory (Oxford University Press)
Editor: Diego von Vacano (Texas A&M University)
Consulting Editors: Andrew March (Yale) and Leigh Jenco (LSE)
The book series will seek to publish the best new research in Comparative Political Theory. We understand this term in a broad sense, as work that goes beyond traditional Western canonical approaches to major political questions or problems. We are especially interested in work that is comparative (deals with two or more distinctive cultural traditions in political thought) and which comes from the discipline of Political Theory in Political Science. However, other approaches and disciplines such as History, Philosophy, Anthropology, and Sociology are welcome. Interdisciplinary perspectives on cardinal political issues will also be of interest.
Continue reading “New Book Series”
The next session of the Columbia University Seminar on Neo-Confucian Studies will convene Friday, November 6, 2015 from 3:30 to 5:30pm in the Heyman Center for the Humanities at Columbia University.
Eske Mollgaard will present the paper “Can Confucians Universalize Themselves?” Please contact the organizers for a copy.
All are welcome to attend. Please join us after the seminar for dinner at a location to be announced.
If you have any questions, contact one of our organizers: Ari Borrell (firstname.lastname@example.org), Tao Jiang (email@example.com), or Deborah Sommer (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Kang Xiaoguang is an interesting contemporary Chinese social scientist, public intellectual, and promoter of a particular brand of Confucianism; I wrote about him a bit in Contemporary Confucian Political Philosophy. I have now learned that there is an English-language book about him: Monika Gaenssbauer, Confucianism and Social Issues in China — the Academician Kang Xiaoguang: Investigations into NGOs in China, the Falun Gong, Chinese Reportage, and the Confucian Tradition (Projectverlag, 2011). I will have to take a look!
Another happy announcement: Loubna El Amine’s new book, Classical Confucian Political Thought: A New Interpretation, has been published by Princeton University Press. PUP has provided us with a flyer that offers a 20% discount to celebrate! If you’d prefer, here is a link to Amazon. Congratulations, Loubna!
I am happy to pass on the news that Sungmoon Kim of the City University of Hong Kong will receive an award for Outstanding Academic Output from South Korea’s Ministry of Education for his book, Confucian Democracy in East Asia: Theory And Practice (Cambridge University Press, 2014). Congratulations, Sungmoon!
Last week Daniel Bell published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, “Troubles for the ‘China Model’: Meritocracy has worked for Beijing, but to survive, the system needs more openness.” And you might also be interested in this review by Thomas Kelloggg, on ChinaFile.
Daniel Bell will join five panelists to discuss his book The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy (Princeton, 2015) at Duke University on Monday, October 19, 5-6:30pm. Details are here.
Leigh Jenco’s review of my Contemporary Confucian Political Philosophy: Toward Progressive Confucianism (Polity, 2013) has been published in the Journal of Moral Philosophy 12(5).
Ethics and the Professions – Good Practitioners in a Rising Asia
Friday, October 16, 2015, 12:15pm
S153, 1st Floor, CGIS South, 1730 Cambridge St., Cambridge, MA
Kenneth Winston, Visiting Scholar, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Harvard Kennedy School
Many Asian countries are in transition, as they struggle to meet the demands of a global world. This struggle is not only economic and political; it is moral. Simply put, it is a struggle to preserve what one believes to be of value in one’s own culture or tradition while responding to new circumstances and participating in new relationships. Thus, it often involves a hybrid of traditional beliefs and transplanted values, which makes Asian countries fascinating sites for the study of political and ethical development. In particular, emerging democratic aspirations and increasing commitment to standards of professionalism are constituent elements of the new moral environment in Asia. As a result, the ethical challenges faced by practitioners have a special urgency and demand close attention. This talk presents a general framework for thinking about these challenges, focusing on the kinds of moral competence professionals require in working for the good of others.
Philosopher Jiwei Ci from the University of Hong Kong will be spending a couple weeks at Harvard in November and giving a series of lectures. The details here here: Fairbank Democracy and China poster. There will also be a one-day conference on Friday, November 13 titled “Democracy and China: Philosophical-Poltical Reflections” with a number of speakers, and Prof. Ci’s commentary. (I’ll post details of that once it has been finalized.)
A reminder that 2015-16 ACLS fellowship competitions are now open, several of which support work related to China. These fellowships are supported in part by the Munro Fund for Chinese Thought, which is designed to “support ACLS Fellowships awarded for research projects on Chinese philosophical traditions and ethical systems that exhibit high quality in sinology and in critical analysis, as well as relevance to human problems.”
Daniel A. Bell’s new book, The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy (Princeton, 2015) has been published. Amazon is here. Unsurprisingly, the book is occasioning considerable discussion. One early review is here. Comments (and references to other reviews) are welcome!
Jaeyoon Song’s important study of Song dynasty political thinking, Traces of Grand Peace: Classics and State Activism in Imperial China, now has a webpage and is scheduled for publication in November. Congratulations, Jaeyoon!
The latest issue of Telos (171; Summer, 2015) contains a special section on the debate over “universal values” in China. Here is the on-line introduction to the issue; the Table of Contents follows.
Continue reading “Latest Telos has section on “Universal Values””
The Center for East Asian and Comparative Philosophy (CEACOP) at the City University of Hong Kong is offering a one-year postdoctoral fellowship in political philosophy/theory to begin in Fall 2015. Requirements include a PhD in Philosophy/Political Science, with specialization in Political Philosophy/Theory and no more than 3 years’ postdoctoral experience. Familiarity with Comparative Political Theory/East Asian Philosophy would be an advantage, but is not essential.
For more information and to apply, see: http://www.cityu.edu.hk/hro/en/job/current/administrative.asp?ref=ur-cr985
Sungmoon Kim, ed., Confucianism, Law and Democracy in Contemporary Korea (Rowman and Littlefield International; CEACOP Series in East Asian Comparative Ethics, Politics and Philosophy of Law) has been published. Congratulations to all involved: it looks terrific!
Continue reading “New Book: Kim, ed., Confucianism, Law and Democracy in Contemporary Korea”
I am looking forward to this workshop on Joseph Chan’s important book, Confucian Perfectionism, to be held at HKU on May 15. Details (and free registration information) here.
Daniel Bell’s latest New York Times op-ed: “Teaching ‘Western Values’ in China” grapples with some of the difficulties with teaching and researching both “Western” and “Chinese” values.
Oliver Weingarten’s review of Smadar Winter’s University of Chicago Ph.D. dissertation, “Motherhood in Early China,” is available online. A couple highlights (from the review, not the dissertation itself):
- “…An example of her disagreement with earlier scholarship is her response to attempts by Catherine Despeux and Livia Kohn to highlight the “prominence of motherhood” in the Laozi 老子. Winter counters this claim with a well-conceived alternative reading that argues for the secondary importance of motherhood in the text.”
- “…In her conclusion, Winter revisits debates about two paradigms in the gender history of early China: “woman as victim” and “woman as agent.” While she acknowledges the importance of the latter, she reminds her readers that “women’s agency was always defined in the service of male interests.” (p. 215) To acknowledge this is crucial so as to not to forget the “forms of oppression from which early Chinese women have suffered.” Consequently, Winter argues against “a neutral-to-positive tone which seems to be saying: Yes, there was oppression, but women were still able to lead meaningful lives and fulfill their humanity in the roles that subordinated them.” (p. 216)”