Cover image for Learning from Asian philosophy
Title:
Learning from Asian philosophy
Author:
Kupperman, Joel.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Oxford University Press, [1999]

©1999
Physical Description:
viii, 208 pages ; 24 cm
Language:
English
Contents:
The formation of self as an ethical problem -- The fluidity of self -- Choice -- The scope of ethics -- The demands of ethics -- Philosophy as communication.
Reading Level:
1310 Lexile.
ISBN:
9780195128314

9780195128321
Format :
Book

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Status
Central Library B121 .K86 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Summary

Summary

Joel Kupperman shows how six philosophical topics of late-1990s interest can benefit from interaction with Asian philosophy. The topics are: the formation of the self as an ethical problem, the fluidity of the self, the ethical nature of choice, the scope of ethics, the demands of ethics, and the nature of philosophy as an enterprise. For each of these topics he introduces the relevant Asian sources and shows how new consideration of them can enrich one's understanding of the very range and scope of ethical concern, and enhance our own ability to describe and account for important features of human life. In so doing, he builds a bridge across the disciplines.


Summary

In an attempt to bridge the vast divide between classical Asian thought and contemporary Western philosophy, Joel J. Kupperman finds that the two traditions do not, by and large, supply different answers to the same questions. Rather, each tradition is searching for answers to their own set ofquestions--mapping out distinct philosophical investigations. In this groundbreaking book, Kupperman argues that the foundational Indian and Chinese texts include lines of thought that can enrich current philosophical practice, and in some cases provide uniquely sophisticated insights. Special attention is given to the ethical issues of formation and fluidityof self, the nature and possibilities of choice, the compartmentalization of life implicit in some ethical systems, the variations of ethical demands from person to person, and the nature of philosophy itself as a communicative activity. This study will provide a wealth of information forphilosophers seeking a closer knowledge of Asian philosophy and general readers with an interest in Eastern thought.


Author Notes

Joel J. Kupperman is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut, and has been a visiting professor at colleges in Oxford and Cambridge. His previous books include Ethical Knowledge (1970), The Foundations of Morality (1983), Character (1991), and Value . . . And What Follows(1999).


Joel J. Kupperman is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut, and has been a visiting professor at colleges in Oxford and Cambridge. His previous books include Ethical Knowledge (1970), The Foundations of Morality (1983), Character (1991), and Value . . . And What Follows(1999).


Reviews 2

Choice Review

Kupperman (Univ. of Connecticut) applies analytic ethics to the formation and fluidity of self, the scope and demands of ethics, and the nature of philosophy. He holds that in Confucian and Buddhist philosophies, as in Plato, there is a core set of philosophical judgments with interconnections and experiential connections that together constitute an argument. Believing that any philosophical tradition can help any other with its problems, he uses "eclectic borrowing" and is good at picturing and packaging his overall points on Chinese philosophy: the Taoist view of history is seen as "inverted Hegelianism" (wherein syntheses give way to opposed pairs of thesis and antithesis) and Zen "gravitates toward moral psychology while the metaphysics is dramatized rather than argued for." Comments on Indian philosophy are generally less developed, and details less accurate than those on Chinese philosophy. In a Buddhist ethics section, Arjuna is misspelled; works by H. Aronson, P. DeSilva, K.N. Jayatilleke, and K.N. Upadlhyaya go unmentioned. Linguistic niceties such as the use of diacritics for P=ali and Sanskrit (as well as the use of Chinese pictograms) are unobserved. However, Kupperman provides thoughtful philosophical discussions with an analytic focus on desire, choice, and reason, applied to Chinese and Indian thought. Overall, an engaging and stimulating work; recommended for undergraduates and general readers. F. J. Hoffman; West Chester University of Pennsylvania


Choice Review

Kupperman (Univ. of Connecticut) applies analytic ethics to the formation and fluidity of self, the scope and demands of ethics, and the nature of philosophy. He holds that in Confucian and Buddhist philosophies, as in Plato, there is a core set of philosophical judgments with interconnections and experiential connections that together constitute an argument. Believing that any philosophical tradition can help any other with its problems, he uses "eclectic borrowing" and is good at picturing and packaging his overall points on Chinese philosophy: the Taoist view of history is seen as "inverted Hegelianism" (wherein syntheses give way to opposed pairs of thesis and antithesis) and Zen "gravitates toward moral psychology while the metaphysics is dramatized rather than argued for." Comments on Indian philosophy are generally less developed, and details less accurate than those on Chinese philosophy. In a Buddhist ethics section, Arjuna is misspelled; works by H. Aronson, P. DeSilva, K.N. Jayatilleke, and K.N. Upadlhyaya go unmentioned. Linguistic niceties such as the use of diacritics for P=ali and Sanskrit (as well as the use of Chinese pictograms) are unobserved. However, Kupperman provides thoughtful philosophical discussions with an analytic focus on desire, choice, and reason, applied to Chinese and Indian thought. Overall, an engaging and stimulating work; recommended for undergraduates and general readers. F. J. Hoffman; West Chester University of Pennsylvania


Table of Contents

Introduction
Section 1 The Formation of the Self
Section 2 The Fluidity of the Self
Section 3 Choice
Section 4 The Scope of Ethics
Section 5 The Demands of Ethics
Section 6 Philosophy as Communication
Bibliography
Index
Introduction
Section 1 The Formation of the Self
Section 2 The Fluidity of the Self
Section 3 Choice
Section 4 The Scope of Ethics
Section 5 The Demands of Ethics
Section 6 Philosophy as Communication
Bibliography
Index

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