A History of Chinese Classical Scholarship, Volume I, Zhou: Confucius, the Six Classics, and Scholastic Transmission


Honey, David B., Humanities Professor of Chinese, Brigham Young University

The first volume of David B. Honey’s comprehensive history of Chinese thought offers a close study of Confucius, that tradition’s proto-classicist. This opening volume examines Confucius traditions that largely formed the views of later classicists, who regarded him as their profession’s patron saint. Honey’s survey begins by examining how these views informed the Chinese classicists’ own identities as textual critics and interpreters, all dedicated to self-cultivation for government service. It focuses on Confucius’s methods as a proto-classical master and teacher, and on the media in which he worked, including the spoken word and written texts. As Honey explains, Confucius’s immediate motivations were twofold: the moral development of himself and his disciples and the ritual application of the lessons from the classics. His instruction occurred in ritualized settings in the form of a question and answer catechism between master and disciples. This pedagogical approach will be analyzed through the interpretive paradigm of “performative ritual,” borrowed from recent studies of Greek classical drama. The volume concludes with a detailed treatment of a trio of Confucius’s disciples who were most prominent in transmitting his teachings, and with chapters on his intellectual inheritors, Mencius and Xunzi.

Asia, East Asia, Asian Studies, Asian Civilization, Philosophy, Chinese Philosophy, Confucius, Mencius, Xunzi, Intellectual History, Education, Pedagogy
Release Date: 
March 1, 2021
9781680539608 Hardcover
Trim Size: 

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