Frontiers of Philosophy in China

ISSN 1673-3436

ISSN 1673-355X(Online)

CN 11-5743/B

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Democracy as a Way to Social Compromise
Han Zhen
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 1-5.

Abstract   PDF (68KB)
In modern society, democracy as a symbol of social civilization and progress is cherished. Any government or organization, whether truly democratic or not, will claim that it is democratic while its opponents are not. However, as a historical notion, democracy does not possess the quality of absoluteness. In my view, democracy, in its original meaning, should be understood as a way to social compromise, whose aim is to guarantee a relatively fair political life.
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Dimensions of Modernity and Their Contemporary Fate
Yi Junqing
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 6-21.

Abstract   PDF (125KB)
Modernity, a focal point of interest in our time, means the cultural schemata and mechanisms of social action stemming from the Enlightenment and the modernization process. It is a set of new and man-made  rationalized mechanisms and rules for human societies that naturally grow beyond geographical boundaries. The interrelated dimensions of modernity may be roughly grouped into intellectual  and institutional  categories including subjectivity and individual self-consciousness, a spirit of rationalized and contracting public culture, modernity in sociohistorical narratives as an ideology, rationalization of economic operations, bureaucracy in administrative management, autonomy of the public sphere, and the democratization and contraction of public power. Modernity is inherently contradictory and risky, yet until now there has been no sign of an end in sight. It remains to be the major support and dynamic in keeping human society running. Let us beware of superficial judgment when reflecting upon theoretical critiques of modernity and try to grasp the great challenges and opportunities of globalization essentially a process of modernity.
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Metaphysics in China and in the West: Common Origin and Later Divergence
Zhao Dunhua
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 22-32.

Abstract   PDF (208KB)
There are two tendencies in the arguments of the legitimacy of metaphysics in ancient China: the tendency to argue that there was no metaphysics in ancient China and the tendency to argue that ancient Chinese metaphysics is totally different from that of the West. In this article, the author counters these tendencies and argues that Chinese and western metaphysics both originated from a dynamic cosmology and shared objects of investigation and characteristics of thinking in terms of Becoming. However, in their later development, due to the difference in the problems of their focus, traditions of moral metaphysics  and (natural) metaphysics of Being  were formed in China and in the West, respectively. The author also explores the reasons for the rise of modern science in the West and its lack of progress in China.
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The Worldwide Significance of Chinese Aesthetics in the Twenty-First Century
Liu Qingping
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 33-40.

Abstract   PDF (91KB)
Through comparisons between traditional Chinese and Western aesthetics, this article tries to explain the worldwide significance of Chinese aesthetic tradition in the twenty-first century. In contrast to cognitive rational spirit and the tendency to distinguish the subjectives and objectives of traditional Western aesthetics, traditional Chinese aesthetics shows a distinctive practical emotional spirit and a tendency to harmoniously unite human beings with nature, and believes that beauty is, first and foremost, a free state or way (Dao) of human life; the most important thing for human beings is how to make their own lives and existence beautiful. Therefore, it puts forward some persuasive and valuable insights into beauty and art, thus playing an independent and constructive role in intercultural aesthetic dialogues of the twenty-first century.
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The Historical Effect of Habermas in the Chinese Context: A Case Study of the Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere
Cao Weidong
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 41-50.

Abstract   PDF (117KB)
The main purpose of this essay is not to give a full-scale and systematic exploration of the historical process concerning the acceptance of Habermas  works in the Chinese-spoken world but to examine the historical effect of Habermas in the Chinese-spoken context and try to find a proper way to establish a good relationship between Habermas and the Chinese-spoken world by discussing the introduction, study, and application of Habermas  most famous work, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, by Chinese scholars in recent years.
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A Phenomenological Reading of Hegel’s Concept of History of Philosophy: An Analysis of “The Gallery of Opinions”, “The Gallery of Knowledge” and “The Gallery of Dresden”
Ke Xiaogang
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 51-59.

Abstract   PDF (107KB)
From a phenomenological perspective of game-space and horizon, this paper tries to make a deconstructive reading of Hegel s two galleries , namely, the gallery of opinions  and the gallery of knowledge , which are mentioned in the introduction of Hegel s Lectures on the History of Philosophy. The reading shows that the Game-space or the ab-gruendiger Grund of the Hegelian concept of philosophical history lies in an originally differencing space that is keeping in absence, which is called by Edmund Husserl and Jacques Derrida the gallery of Dresden .
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Flowing Within the Text: A Discussion on He Lin’s Explanation of Zhu Xi’s Method of Intuition
Zhang Xianglong
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 60-65.

Abstract   PDF (156KB)
The author examines He Lin s interpretation of Zhu Xi s method of intuition from a phenomenological hermeneutical perspective and by exposing Zhu s philosophical presuppositions. In contrast with Lu Xiangshan s intuitive method, Zhu Xi s method of reading classics advocates emptying your heart and flowing with the text  and, in this spirit, explains the celebrated exhaustive investigation on the principles of things (ge wu qiong li).  Text,  according to Zhu, is therefore not an object in ordinary sense but a contextual region  or sensible pattern  that, when merged with the reader, generates meanings. Furthermore, by discussing the related doctrines of Lao Zi, Zhuang Zi, Hua-Yan Buddhism, Zhou Dunyi, and Zhu Xi s own One principle with many manifestations (li yi fen shu),  the author identifies the philosophical preconditions of Zhu s method. Based on this analysis, the author goes on to illustrate Zhu s understanding of observing potential yet unapparent pleasure, anger, sorrow and happiness  and maintaining a serious attitude (zhu jing). 
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Hu Shi’s Study of Chinese Medieval Intellectual History
Lou Yulie
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 66-78.

Abstract   PDF (119KB)
Hu Shi frequently gave lectures on the history of Chinese philosophy, especially the history of ancient Chinese philosophy, from the year 1919 to 1937. A large number of papers and dissertations published during this period are related to his research on this topic. In his opinion, there are three characteristics of the history of ancient Chinese philosophy:  religionalization of thought,  Indianization of philosophy,  and conflict between Chinese thought and Indian thought.  In this paper, I explore Hu Shi s deep insight into the religionalization of Confucianism in Han dynasty and into the thought of Taoism in the medieval times.
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On The Universal and Local Aspects of Confucianism
Chen Lai
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 79-91.

Abstract   PDF (185KB)
To counter the tendency of making Confucianism localized  and thereby turning Confucianism research into research of local social history, the author criticizes this tendency and thinks it is unilateral to emphasize or stress the importance of a small unit s locality, but ignore the oneness of the distribution of Confucianism and the universality of Confucian thought. The thesis emphasizes that the main schools of Confucianism in the Song and Ming Dynasties are all not local ones and cannot be reduced to reflections of some local need and social structure. The author points out that we need to self-examine the following phenomena: aggrandizing the function of local social structure to culture and thought, coming down academic schools to reflections of local social benefits, opposing this kind of research to the research of thought itself, thus rejecting philosophical research and analysis of thought itself.
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On Li Zhi’s Theory of Growing up in Spirit
Wang Junjiang
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 92-101.

Abstract   PDF (127KB)
The theory of growing up in spirit is the core of Li Zhi s thought. The theory attempts to get rid of the limit of the rigid ethical doctrine of Confucianism and to encourage growth in a helpful person for the benefit of the country, which demands both a free environment of society and enough courage and insight of the individual. At the same time, the criterion of growing up in spirit indicates the limitation of Li Zhi s thought. His free exploration, however, provides various revelations for us.
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On Luo Congyan’s Ethics
Yang Guorong
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 102-113.

Abstract   PDF (109KB)
Luo Congyan put forward the idea that benevolence is the substance while righteousness is its function, which placed the intrinsic value of human beings on a more fundamental position and affirmed the unity of benevolent principle and universal norms from the perspective of the relationship between substance and function. The unity of benevolence and righteousness involves the connection between value and norms, and the latter relate to the relationship between morality and law in the broader sense. On the basis of the idea of using both benevolence and righteousness, Luo Congyan examined the relationship between morality and law. Corresponding to the emphasis on the role of both law and political power, Luo Congyan concerned himself with how to establish rational interpersonal relationships in various ways. Furthermore, Luo Congyan emphasized the significance of behavior in everyday life, while he affirmed that the universal principle should be followed. In this way, he developed the earlier Confucian thought.
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Thing, Value, Time, and Freedom: A Consideration of Some Key Concepts in Marx’s Philosophical System
Yu Wujin
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 114-123.

Abstract   PDF (111KB)
Criticizing the misunderstanding and wrong explanation of Marx s philosophical system made by recent Chinese textbooks on Marxist philosophy, the author argues that Marx s philosophy has practical, economical philosophical, and ontological dimensions and stresses on reconstructing Marx s philosophical system through synthesizing the above three dimensions. This paper intends to set up a new outline of Marx s philosophical system, in terms of the following four concepts thing, value, time, and freedom.
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Disputes over Philosophical Views in the First Half of the Twentieth Century and Development of Contemporary Chinese Philosophy
Sun Zhengyu
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 124-132.

Abstract   PDF (114KB)
To explore the development of contemporary Chinese philosophy, fundamentally, is to explore the development of Marxist philosophy in contemporary China. The disputes over philosophical views in Chinese academic circles during the first half of the twentieth century have been focused on understanding Marxist philosophy from such aspects as what kind of philosophy Chinese society needs,  the relation of philosophy to science,  and philosophy as an idea to reflect on one s life.  These explorations have provided us a significant ideological insight into the development of Marxist philosophy and contemporary Chinese philosophy; that is, in contemporary China, Marxist philosophy, as a doctrine of the liberation and all-round development of human beings, exists not only as a kind of doctrine  or academy  but also as a kind of widely accepted xueyuan (academic cultivations)  among people.
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The Theme and Logical Construction of the Taoist Philosophy
Qiang Yu
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 133-143.

Abstract   PDF (103KB)
Fully embracing previous achievements in the research of Taoist philosophy, this paper attempts to create a sound analysis and investigation of the value concern of Taoism and reconstruct a new set of Taoist philosophy conforming to the requirement of modern science from the perspective of modern philosophy. The author sincerely wishes that the preliminary understanding of the Taoist philosophy presented in this paper would contribute to the construction of the Taoist philosophy.
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Buddhist Thought and Several Problems in the World Today
Yao Weiqun
Front. Philos. China. 2006, 1 (1): 144-147.

Abstract   PDF (60KB)
Buddhism has not only produced an influence upon the ancient world culture but is also playing an important role in world affairs today. This article analyzes several important problems in the world today: world peace, disarmament, economic justice, human rights, environmental protection, and universal cooperation in world problem solving. The writer holds that, to solve these problems, we should study Buddhist theory and get some helpful ideas from it.
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15 articles