Cover image for Transformations of the Confucian way
Title:
Transformations of the Confucian way
Author:
Berthrong, John H., 1946-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Boulder, Colo : Westview Press, 1998.
Physical Description:
xiv, 250 pages ; 23 cm.
Language:
English
Reading Level:
1350 Lexile.
ISBN:
9780813328058

9780813328041
Format :
Book

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B127.C65 B47 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Summary

Summary

From its beginnings, Confucianism has vibrantly taught that each person is able to find the Way individually in service to the community and the world. For over 2,600 years, Confucianism has sustained a continual process of transformation and growth. In this comprehensive new work, John Berthrong examines the vitality and expansion of the Confucian tradition throughout East Asia and into the entire modern world.Confucianism has been credited with being the dominant social and intellectual force shaping the enduring civilizations of East Asia. If we are to grasp the history of East Asia, we must understand the role that Confucianism has played in the social and cultural formation of the entire region. Just as civilizations are ever-changing, there has been nothing timeless or static about Confucianism.Berthrong's study is unique in its discussion of each of the historical and regional phases of the development of the Confucian Tao. All too often, Confucian studies have focused exclusively on the classical early period and the great thinkers of the later neo-Confucian revival in the Sung Ming dynasties. Berthrong's work opens the reader's eyes to the often neglected gifts of scholars of the Han, T'ang, and the modern periods, as well as to the vast contributions of Korea and Japan. The author concludes this revelatory study with an examination of the contemporary renewal of the Confucian Way in East Asia and its recent spread to the West.


Summary

From its beginnings, Confucianism has vibrantly taught that each person is able to find the Way individually in service to the community and the world. For over 2,600 years, Confucianism has sustained a continual process of transformation and growth. In this comprehensive new work, John Berthrong examines the vitality and expansion of the Confucian tradition throughout East Asia and into the entire modern world.Confucianism has been credited with being the dominant social and intellectual force shaping the enduring civilizations of East Asia. If we are to grasp the history of East Asia, we must understand the role that Confucianism has played in the social and cultural formation of the entire region. Just as civilizations are ever-changing, there has been nothing timeless or static about Confucianism.Berthrong's study is unique in its discussion of each of the historical and regional phases of the development of the Confucian Tao. All too often, Confucian studies have focused exclusively on the classical early period and the great thinkers of the later neo-Confucian revival in the Sung Ming dynasties. Berthrong's work opens the reader's eyes to the often neglected gifts of scholars of the Han, T'ang, and the modern periods, as well as to the vast contributions of Korea and Japan. The author concludes this revelatory study with an examination of the contemporary renewal of the Confucian Way in East Asia and its recent spread to the West.


Author Notes

John H. Berthrong is associate dean for academic and administrative affairs and director of the Institute for Dialogue Among Religious Traditions at Boston University.


John H. Berthrong is associate dean for academic and administrative affairs and director of the Institute for Dialogue Among Religious Traditions at Boston University.


Reviews 2

Choice Review

Unlike William Theodore de Bary, who focuses on the topic of leadership with lesser reference to scholarship and religion in his The Trouble with Confucianism (1991), Berthrong (Boston Univ.) chronicles the development of the Confucian Way from its beginnings in China to Korea and Japan. Berthrong is also author of Interfaith Dialogue: An Annotated Bibliography (1993) and All under Heaven: Paradigms in Confucian-Christian Dialogue (CH, Nov'94). Here, in a clear, readable style, the author guides the reader through multiple modifications of the canon of Confucianism, from the classical Chou masters to the New Confucianism in transition from its east Asian home to the modern world. Beyond the fact that Confucianism's impact on East Asian civilization is as great as that of Christianity on the West, Berthrong contends that it is intrinsically valuable. The present Confucian task is to sift through the tradition to save, modify, and abandon, if necessary. The book includes a list of further readings and issues, a conversion table for Romanizing Chinese characters, and a glossary. Useful for general readers and all levels in colleges and universities. D. A. Haney Marywood University


Choice Review

Unlike William Theodore de Bary, who focuses on the topic of leadership with lesser reference to scholarship and religion in his The Trouble with Confucianism (1991), Berthrong (Boston Univ.) chronicles the development of the Confucian Way from its beginnings in China to Korea and Japan. Berthrong is also author of Interfaith Dialogue: An Annotated Bibliography (1993) and All under Heaven: Paradigms in Confucian-Christian Dialogue (CH, Nov'94). Here, in a clear, readable style, the author guides the reader through multiple modifications of the canon of Confucianism, from the classical Chou masters to the New Confucianism in transition from its east Asian home to the modern world. Beyond the fact that Confucianism's impact on East Asian civilization is as great as that of Christianity on the West, Berthrong contends that it is intrinsically valuable. The present Confucian task is to sift through the tradition to save, modify, and abandon, if necessary. The book includes a list of further readings and issues, a conversion table for Romanizing Chinese characters, and a glossary. Useful for general readers and all levels in colleges and universities. D. A. Haney Marywood University


Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. ix
A Note on Conventionsp. xi
Dynastic Chartp. xiii
Introduction Transformations and Variations on Confucian Historyp. 1
1 The Classical Tradition from Confucius to Hsün Tzup. 13
2 The Comments of the Han: The Confucian Canon Definedp. 35
3 The Defense of the Faith from the Wei-Chin (220-420) to the T'Ang (618-907): the Challenge of Taoism and Buddhismp. 61
4 The Renaissance of the Sung: The Second Golden Agep. 86
5 The Flourishing of the Yüan and Mingp. 115
6 Korean and Japanese Confucianism and the Ch'Ing School of Evidential Researchp. 144
7 Confucianism in the Modern Worldp. 174
Further Readings and Contentious Issuesp. 201
Wade-Giles to Pinyin Conversion Tablep. 207
Glossaryp. 213
Bibliographyp. 215
Indexp. 239
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
A Note on Conventionsp. xi
Dynastic Chartp. xiii
Introduction Transformations and Variations on Confucian Historyp. 1
1 The Classical Tradition from Confucius to Hsün Tzup. 13
2 The Comments of the Han: The Confucian Canon Definedp. 35
3 The Defense of the Faith from the Wei-Chin (220-420) to the T'Ang (618-907): the Challenge of Taoism and Buddhismp. 61
4 The Renaissance of the Sung: The Second Golden Agep. 86
5 The Flourishing of the Yüan and Mingp. 115
6 Korean and Japanese Confucianism and the Ch'Ing School of Evidential Researchp. 144
7 Confucianism in the Modern Worldp. 174
Further Readings and Contentious Issuesp. 201
Wade-Giles to Pinyin Conversion Tablep. 207
Glossaryp. 213
Bibliographyp. 215
Indexp. 239