Presenter: Stephen Walker (University of Chicago) Discussants: Timothy Connolly (East Stroudsburg University), Tao Jiang (Rutgers University), Qianyi Qin (CUNY Graduate Center), Hagop Sarkissian (CUNY Graduate Center & Baruch College)
ABSTRACT: This session will focus on the celebrated ‘Robber Zhi’ (盜跖) dialogue from the Miscellaneous Chapters (雜篇) of the Zhuangzi. In the dialogue, Kongzi (or Confucius) tries to persuade Robber Zhi to abandon his marauding ways and lead a more conventional life. While the character of Robber Zhi is obviously brutal, and a person few of us would want to emulate (or interact with in any way), he’s also strikingly insightful about human needs and frailties, and attentive to the more covert kinds of brutality we endure simply by living in organized societies. Not only does he raise the possibility that attempts to morally reform individuals might produce more harm than good, but he also embodies, in his own person, the pointlessness of making appeals to powerful persons who don’t value morality at all. The presenter will spend about 15 minutes summarizing the dialogue, and the discussants will spend about five minutes each raising points for discussion. The rest of the session will consist of Q&A. Those planning to attend are strongly encouraged to read the dialogue before the session begins. You can download a recent translation by Brook Ziporyn by clicking on this link.
Dao Companion to Chinese Philosophy of Logic (volume 12 in the series of Dao Companions to Chinese Philosophy), edited by Yiuming Fung, has just been published by Springer. Below is an overview of the book. Here is a link to the Dao Companions series.
Lin Ma and Jaap van Brakel, Beyond the Troubled Water of Shifei: From Disputation to Walking-Two-Roads in the Zhuangzi, SUNY Press, 2019, 283pp., $32.95 (pbk), ISBN 9781438474823.
Reviewed by Ricki Bliss, Lehigh University
Interpretation is always underdetermined and indeterminate. It is underdetermined by the data and it is indeterminate because meaning doesn’t allow it to be any other way. Interpretation is by no means a hopeless enterprise, however. Necessary conditions on the activity of interpretation are: (i) the assumption, on the part of the interpreter, of the family resemblance of forms of life; (ii) the assumption that all general concepts and conceptual schemes in all languages are family resemblance concepts; and (iii) a principle of mutual attunement.
Below is information from the ISCP regarding the 22nd International Conference of the International Society for Chinese Philosophy (ISCP):
Dear friends and colleagues of ISCP,
We are pleased to announce the “call for papers” for the 22nd International Conference of the International Society for Chinese Philosophy (ISCP). This ISCP biennial international conference is to take place July 5-8, 2021, in Shanghai, China. The conference will be hosted by East China Normal University and our society’s president Guorong Yang. The languages of the conference are English and Chinese. Please pay special attention to the conference theme and the deadlines.
Moreover, with the generous support of the Fu Foundation, this year we will continue the tradition of “The Charles Wei-Hsun Fu Foundation-ISCP Essay Contest” that comes with a sizable cash prize. More details will be forthcoming.
The May 2020 issue of the Journal of Chinese Religions is now online at https://muse.jhu.edu/issue/42207. Among other things, it contains a review of Hans-Georg Moeller and Paul J. D’Ambrosio, Genuine Pretending: On the Philosophy of the Zhuangzi by Stephen C. Walker.
Scott Barnwell has recently added a new chapter to his series of essays on classical Daoism, called Classical Daoism’s Amoral Ethos. On the site he explains that this is the first in a three-part series exploring early Daoist ethics.
There is also a significant savings in buying the two volume set; see here. Congratulations, Jim! Summaries follow.
In this timely and original work, Dewey’s late-period “cultural turn” is recovered and “intra-cultural philosophy” proposed as its next logical step—a step beyond what is commonly known as comparative philosophy. The first of two volumes, John Dewey and Daoist Thought argues that early Chinese thought is poised to join forces with Dewey in meeting our most urgent cultural needs: namely, helping us to correct our outdated Greek-medieval assumptions, especially where these result in pre-Darwinian inferences about the world.
this is to inform you about the international conference “Selfhood, Otherness, and Cultivation. Phenomenology and Chinese Philosophy” (March 18-20, at National Chengchi University in Taipei). You can still register on our website which also contains many helpful information (list of speakers, abstracts, etc.). The conference is co-hosted by the philosophy department and the interdisciplinary “Research Center on Chinese Cultural Subjectivity in Taiwan” at National Chengchi University. Our guest of honor is Dan Zahavi (Kopenhagen/Oxford) who, besides participating in our conference, will also give a series of lectures next week (see here).