Boston Confucianism: Portable Tradition in the Late-Modern World (SUNY Series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture) / Edition 1

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Argues that Confucianism can be important to the contemporary, global conversation of philosophy and should not be confined to an East Asian context.
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Editorial Reviews

Maintains that Confucianism is important to Western philosophy and should not be narrowly conceived as an Eastern religion. Promoting multiculturalism through renewed East-West and Confucian-Christian dialogue, Neville (philosophy, religion, and theology, Boston U.) fosters the idea that the world is not a clash of civilizations but an entanglement worth sorting out. One of the most interesting topics is the notion of taking on multiple religious identities, as in the Three Schools Movement (Confucianism, Buddhism, and Daoism) or in the simultaneous practice of Christianity and Confucianism. Do Neville and his editors sense the West now ready to juxtapose Christian parable to Confucian analect, to practice a more Asian-style religious syncretization? Now that the West's recently educated have been exposed to pomo scholarship advancing and describing our late- capitalist, post-industrialist, polymorphous and rhizomatous identity constituted by the joyful sprouting and blossoming of multiple cultural performativities, Boston Confucians just might be on to something. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780791447185
  • Publisher: State University of New York Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2000
  • Series: SUNY series in Chinese Philosophy and Culture Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 258
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.48 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword by Tu Weiming


1. The Short Happy Life of Boston Confucianism

1.1. Portable Confucianism: Roots and Branches
1.2. Ritual Propriety
1.3. Pragmatism
1.4. Confucian Critique for Boston
1.5. Bostonian Modifications of Confucianism

2. Confucianism on Culture

2.1. Philosophy of Culture
2.2. An Elementary Theory of Culture and Nature in Xunzi
2.3. Chinese Orientations to Culture: Confucian, Daoist, Legalist, Moist, and Buddhist
2.4. Confucius, Mencius, and Xunzi Compared
2.5. Confucian Contributions to a Contemporary Philosophy of Culture

3. Confucianism in the Contemporary Situation

3.1. Historical Background
3.2. Interpretive, Bridging, and Normative Philosophers
3.3. Roger T. Ames and David L. Hall
3.4. Cheng Chungying
3.5. Wu Kuangming

4. Confucian Spirituality

4.1. Philosophy and Religion
4.2. Spirituality and Ultimate Reality: Defining Hypotheses
4.3. Self, Truth, and Transformation
4.4. Confucian Spirituality in a Scientific Society
4.5. Confucian Spirituality in a Global Moral Democracy and Ecology

5. Tu Weiming’s Confucianism

5.1. Conversation and Existential Choice: Way of the Sage
5.2. The Question of Conversion
5.3. The Question of Ritual
5.4. The Question of Love (Ren)
5.5. The Question of Evil

6. Motif Analysis East and West

6.1. Motif Analysis
6.2. Comparison
6.3. Ancient Cultural Motifs and Their Development
6.4. Relations of Motifs to Deeper Imaginative Artifacts
6.5. Motifs and Their Sequelae

7. Motifs of Being

7.1. The Trouble with Being
7.2. Philosophy as Engagement
7.3. Western Motifs for Being
7.4. The Dialectic of Being
7.5. South and East Asian Motifs for Being

8. Motifs of Transcendence

8.1. Transcendence as a Category
8.2. Transcendence in Ancient Confucianism
8.3. Transcendence in Neo-Confucianism
8.4. God and the Imago Dei
8.5. John Wesley and the Image of God

9. Resources for a Conception of Selfhood

9.1. Problems with the Self
9.2. The Self as Contradictory and Self-Deceived in Western Thought
9.3. The Self in Confucian Thought
9.4. Self-Deception in Confucian Thought
9.5. The Self as Orientation and Poise

10. Confucianism, Christianity, and Multiple Religious Identity

10.1. Engaging Problematic Cases
10.2. Filial Piety as Holy Duty
10.3. Ritual Propriety
10.4. Jesus as Model
10.5. Multiple Religious Identity




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