I will be giving an on-line talk next week on my new book, Growing Moral: A Confucian Guide to Life, hosted by the Center for East Asian and Comparative Philosophy at the City University of Hong Kong. The talk will take place via Zoom at 10 am on Friday, April 8 in HKT, which will be at 10pm on Thursday, April 7 EDT. So if you’re in East Asia, or are a night owl in the US, feel free to join! Details are on the attached poster.
Carine Defoort and Paul van Els have published Confucius spreekt (Confucius Speaks). Antwerp: Pelckmans, 2021. Paul writes:
While the book is written in Dutch, perhaps the Warp, Weft, and Way community might like to be kept abreast of relevant developments outside the English-speaking world? In any case, I made a quick English translation of the book-page on my website.
Piety without Obedience? Popular Discourse on Filial Piety as a Resource for Morality in Contemporary China Lecture (online), December 17, 16:00–18:00
ABOUT THE SPEAKER
Marius Meinhof received his PhD degree in 2017 at Bielefeld University. From 2013 to 2016 he held a doctoral research Position at Bielefeld Graduate School in History and Sociology. In 2016, he joined the faculty of sociology at Bielefeld University as a research associate. He is currently the project leader in the DFG-funded project »Zivilisierte Familien. Diskurse der ›kindlichen Treue‹ in China im Zeitalter des ›chinesischen Traums‹«. His fields of research are China, Post-colonialism in China and Consumption, placing an accent on Governmentality in consumption.
UPDATE: The Student Workers of Columbia University (SWC) went on strike as of November 3, 2021. The Columbia Society for Comparative Philosophy respects the SWC’s decision to strike, and hopes that an agreement is reached quickly.
Until then, we have chosen to suspend our seminar meetings, including the previously scheduled meeting for Friday, November 12, in solidarity with the striking students. A revised schedule of meetings will be announced at the appropriate time. Original announcement (now edited), below. – HS
THE COLUMBIA SOCIETY FOR COMPARATIVE PHILOSOPHY
Presents: Li Zehou on the ‘Deep Structures of Confucianism’
Lead Presenter: Andrew Lambert (College of Staten Island, CUNY)
Discussants: Robert A. Carleo III (East China Normal University), Ryan Nichols (California State University, Fullerton), Emma Buchtel (Hong Kong Education University)
ABSTRACT: Contemporary Chinese intellectual Li Zehou’s cross-cultural methodology blends traditional Confucian thought with thinkers such as Kant and Marx. This seminar addresses the question of culture and its role in Li’s thought. Li has made several claims about how a settled cultural tradition influences the subjects within it. One such claim concerns the existence of ‘deep structures’ of Confucianism, as outlined in this preparatory reading. The idea is that culture, history, and social practice (collectively, a tradition) shape human psychology (including the formation of concepts, emotions, and values) in ways not always apparent to the subject. Within the Chinese tradition, Confucianism constitutes such a deep structure, and its effects cannot be captured by textual studies alone, nor studies of material culture. Rather, the deep structure is articulated in terms of an emergent shared subjectivity. Such traditions can evolve and ultimately dissolve; nevertheless, their effects are deep-rooted. This seminar meeting will aim to identify the parameters of Li’s ambitious theoretical framework and its plausibility, and to explore connections with current work in related fields, such as cultural and empirical psychology.
This seminar will take place via Zoom (please scroll down for the full invitation). Below you will find the link to join the meeting. Continue reading →
Lan Jiang-fu’s article “‘Confucianism’, an Alternative Source of Belief in Contemporary Chinese Society: An Empirical Study of the Founding of Xin 信 in a ‘Confucian’ Company” has just been published in the journal Religions.
Open claims to Confucian values, often associated with cultural traditionalism and a larger revival of Confucianism among the Chinese population from the 2000s onwards, have gained momentum in the world of entrepreneurs. The intensity of this phenomenon can be explained by a wide variety of motivations, among which a desire to establish a belief, a sort of xin 信 towards traditional values, has emerged from within the “Confucian” company. Based on fieldwork carried out between 2017 and 2018 at TW, a private company located in Dongguan (Guangdong), this paper aims to analyze the efforts undertaken by “Confucian” managers to use the spiritual guidance role of Confucianism. Our work is organized into three sections. First, we analyze the main modalities of proselytizing within TW. Then, based on the personal experiences of three employees of this company, we try to understand how they live the jiaohua and to what extent this “educational” experience inspired by Confucianism has allowed them to reorient themselves towards a new way of perceiving the world. Finally, by placing it in a broader context, that of contemporary Chinese society’s crisis of values, we question the role Confucianism can play in the foundation of a population’s beliefs.
The full text is available here.
The latest volume in the authoritative Dao Companion series has been published: David Elstein, ed., Dao Companion to Contemporary Confucian Philosophy (Springer, 2021). The editorial description:
This edited volume presents a comprehensive examination of contemporary Confucian philosophy from its roots in the late 19th century to the present day. It provides a thorough introduction to the major philosophers and topics in contemporary Confucian philosophy. The individual chapters study the central figures in 20th century Confucian philosophy in China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, as well as the important influences on recent Confucian philosophy. In addition, topical chapters focus on contemporary Confucian theory of knowledge, ethics, politics, aesthetics, and views of human nature. The volume brings together scholars from around the world to provide a sound overview of the philosophy of the period and illustrate the important current debates. Confucian philosophy has been undergoing a revival in China for more than three decades, and this book presents the most significant work of the past century and more. By giving a detailed account of the philosophical positions involved, explaining the terminology of contemporary Confucian philosophy, and situating the views in their historical context, this volume enables the reader to understand what is at stake and evaluate the arguments.
The Table of Contents follows.
The Center for East Asian and Comparative Philosophy (CEACOP) at the City University of Hong Kong is organising a workshop on 10 Dec in which Prof. Ralph Weber and his team will present their projects on 20th century Confucianism. Please find the event poster here with information about how to register. All are welcome!