Frontiers of Philosophy in China

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Introduction
LIAO Shenbai
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 181-182.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0013-3

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The Battle over Confucius and Classical Chinese Philosophy in European Early Enlightenment Thought (1670-1730)
Jonathan Israel
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 183-198.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0014-0

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A profound split is evident during the period 1670–1730 in the way European scholars and commentators attempted to understand and describe classical Chinese thought. For some, Confucianism acknowledged divine creation and divine governance of the world, immortality of the soul and other elements of Natural Theology. The Radical Enlightenment thinkers, however, and also some Christian scholars denied that Confucianism was based on Natural Theology or pervaded by belief in divine providence, characterizing it rather as monist, naturalist and Spinozist. The disagreement proved fundamental in several respects and proved divisive for the Church, as well as European thought more generally, producing a series of lively disputes that continued over several decades.

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“Confucian Cultural Fallacy” in the 20th Century Chinese Enlightenment Movement
WEN Haiming,, CHEN Deming
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 199-214.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0015-7

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The 20th century witnessed a strong cultural enlightenment movement in China, starting with the industrialization movement in the late 19th century Qing dynasty (1616–1912) and continuing in the May Fourth movement in 1919. The cultural enlightenment movement was strongly influenced by Western ideas such as democracy and the primacy of science. The Chinese modern cultural enlightenment can be compared with the European enlightenment that began with the Renaissance. One typical characteristic of this Chinese enlightenment that I wish to emphasize is the determining function of ideas and cultures, especially in light of the many criticisms of traditional Confucianism by intellectuals who blamed it for all the failures of Westernization in the 20th century. This is what I call the “Confucian Cultural Fallacy.” This fallacy has influenced many famous intellectuals, such as Tu Wei-ming. In this paper, I set out to analyze how this fallacy influenced Tu in two of his major arguments: the third stage of the Confucian revival movement, and the idea of “cultural China.” Throughout my analysis of different versions of the Confucian cultural fallacy in modern China, I also discuss how best to understand the Chinese cultural enlightenment movement in relation to Western Enlightenment movements.

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Diderot’s Encyclopédie and the French Enlightenment: Summarizing Knowledge and Questioning Knowledge
Marian Hobson
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 215-229.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0016-4

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The article examines the tradition of the writing of Encyclop?dias and historical dictionaries in seventeenth and eighteenth century France. The main ones—by Bayle, Chambers, and by the group assembled by d’Alembert and Diderot—are all connected with unorthodoxy in religion. The massive collection of knowledge that all three dictionaries compiled sometimes seems to allow a juxtaposition of ideas which cannot be properly reconciled-a situation which leaves it to the reader to create a coherent whole. But Diderot goes the farthest in this direction, and causes even the possibility of such a whole to be questioned.

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Philosophical Research and General Education
Jaakko Hintikka
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 240-246.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0018-8

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Why Study Philosophy?
Shelly Kagan
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 258-265.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0020-9

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What Is Philosophical Education?
JIANG Yi
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 273-277.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0022-3

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Parallelism in the Early Moist Texts
Thierry Lucas
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 289-308.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0024-7

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Parallelism is present everywhere in the early Moist texts: at the syntactic level, at the semantic level, between sentences, between sets of sentences, between argumentative structures. The present article gives many examples of the phenomenon: parallelism of insistence, insistence from top to bottom, insistence from bottom to top, parallelism with symmetry, parallelism involving negation, subcontraries and negation at deeper levels, parallelism of the argumentative structures. Logic is particularly applied to the study of parallelism involving negation. From the point of view of argumentation, it is shown that many of those constructions have an important role in supporting arguments such as: arguments of generalization, a fortiori arguments, arguments of exemplarity, consequentialist arguments, arguments by comparison. This study draws the attention to the importance of argumentation in the study of Moism and gives a new light on the argument by parallelism (mou 侔) in the “Xiaoqu”: It is a natural extension of what we call “parallelism involving negation,” already very common in the early Moist texts.

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The Realistic Actualization of the Moist Passion for Salvation and Its Historical Destination
DING Weixiang
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 309-331.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0025-4

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The passion for salvation, as the spiritual motive of Moism, can be investigated concerning its actualization and historical evolution. Because of his lower class status, a passion for salvation arose in Mozi was at first emphasized in “universal love,” “identification with the superior,” and “will of heaven,” and then was later realized in the spirit of Shi Mo 仕墨, or Moist officials, who were impartial and incorruptible in the execution of their duties. When the officials became frustrated by the despotic powers, their passion then evolved into a spirit of Xia Mo 侠墨, or Moist knights, who never hesitated in helping people and upholding justice. And when Moist knights were finally rooted out by despotic powers, the only choice for Moists was to become Bian Mo 辩墨, or Moist sophists, specialists in “Major Illustration” (“Daqu” 大取) and “Minor Illustration” (“Xiaoqu” 小取). This development, however, ran contrary to its primary ideal. Still, both the impartial and incorruptible Moist officials and the righteous and courageous Moist knights represented an expectation deep inside people’s minds. Therefore, whenever social injustice worsened to a certain degree, the populist spirit of Moism was picked up as a weapon of critique. Thus, the actualization and evolution of this passion for salvation offers a constant mirror for populist thinking.

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Music and the Representation of Emotion
James O. Young
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 332-348.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0026-1

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The claim that many musical works are representational is highly controversial. The formalist view that music is pure form and without any, or any significant, representational content is widely held. Two facts about music are, however, well-established by empirical science: Music is heard as resembling human expressive behaviour and music arouses ordinary emotions. This paper argues that it follows from these facts that music also represents human expressive behaviour and ordinary emotions.

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Art and Society in Light of Adorno’s Non-Identity Philosophy
LUO Songtao
Front Phil Chin. 2013, 8 (2): 349-361.  
https://doi.org/10.3868/s030-002-013-0027-8

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This article begins with a discussion of T.W. Adorno’s exploration of the culture industry, which he sees as characterized by deception and manipulation. The article then goes on to focus on the phenomenon of “false culture,” which has been brought about by commodity fetishism’s expansion to the cultural field in terms of both artistic creation (production) and appraciation (consumption). The article’s task then turns to interpreting Adorno’s critical reflections on art on the basis of his non-identity philosophy and the intrinsic dual dimensions (both destroying and reconciling) of “negative dialectics.” This allows one to make the claim that there is an inner relationship between Adorno’s theory of art and his social thought, and that these two aspects of discussion, particularly seen in relation provide a foundation for meaningful human life.

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17 articles