New book on Zhou Dunyi and Zhu Xi

Joseph Adler’s new book on Zhu Xi’s appropriation of Zhou Dunyi, including substantial translations of Zhou’s writings and Zhu’s commentaties thereon, is now available. Congratulations, Joseph!

Reconstructing the Confucian Dao: Zhu Xi’s Appropriation of Zhou Dunyi
by Joseph A. Adler
(Albany: SUNY Press, 2014)
ISBN13: 978-1-4384-5157-2
ISBN13: 978-1-4384-5158-9 (e-book)

Publisher’s summary:

Discusses how Zhou Dunyi’s thought became a cornerstone of

Zhu Xi, the twelfth-century architect of the neo-Confucian canon,
declared Zhou Dunyi to be the first true sage since Mencius. This was
controversial, as many of Zhu Xi’s contemporaries were critical of
Zhou Dunyi’s Daoist leanings, and other figures had clearly been more
significant to the Song dynasty Confucian resurgence. Why was Zhou
Dunyi accorded such importance? Joseph A. Adler finds that the
earlier thinker provided an underpinning for Zhu Xi’s religious
practice. Zhou Dunyi’s theory of the interpenetration of activity and
stillness allowed Zhu Xi to proclaim that his own theory of mental
and spiritual cultivation mirrored the fundamental principle immanent
in the natural world.  This book revives Zhu Xi as a religious
thinker, challenging longstanding characterizations of him. Readers
will appreciate the inclusion of complete translations of Zhou
Dunyi’s major texts, Zhu Xi’s published commentaries, and other
primary source material.

Table of Contents:

Part I

1. Zhu Xi, Zhou Dunyi, and the Confucian dao
2. Zhou Dunyi’s Role in the daotong
3. The Interpenetration of Activity and Stillness
4. Taiji as “Supreme Polarity”

Part II: Translations of Zhou Dunyi?s Major Works and Zhu Xi’s
Commentaries, with Further Discussions by Zhu Xi and His Students

5. The Supreme Polarity Diagram (Taijitu)
6. Discussion of the Supreme Polarity Diagram (Taijitu shuo)
7. Penetrating the Scripture of Change (Tongshu)
8. Zhu Xi’s Postfaces and Notes


For further information:

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