• The Ambivalence of Creation: Debates Concerning Innovation and Artifice in Early China See large image

    The Ambivalence of Creation: Debates Concerning Innovation and Artifice in Early China (Hardback) By (author) Michael Puett

    Currently unavailable

    We can notify you when this item is back in stock

    | Add to wishlist

    OR try AbeBooks who may have this title (opens in new window).

    Try AbeBooks

    DescriptionAs early as the Warring States period in China (fourth through third centuries B.C.), debates arose concerning how and under what circumstances new institutions could be formed and legitimated. But the debates quickly encompassed more than just legitimation. Larger issues came to the fore: Can a sage innovate? If so, under what conditions? Where did human culture originally come from? Was it created by human sages? Is it therefore an artificial fabrication, or was it based in part on natural patterns? Is it possible for new sages to emerge who could create something better? This book studies these debates from the Warring States period to the early Han (second century b.c.), analyzing the texts in detail and tracing the historical consequences of the various positions that emerged. It also examines the time's conflicting narratives about the origin of the state and how these narratives and ideas were manipulated for ideological purposes during the formation of the first empires. While tracing debates over the question of innovation in early China, the author engages such questions as the prevailing notions concerning artifice and creation. This is of special importance because early China is often described as a civilization that assumed continuity between nature and culture, and hence had no notion of culture as a fabrication, no notion that the sages did anything other than imitate the natural world. The author concludes that such views were not assumptions at all. The ideas that human culture is merely part of the natural world, and that true sages never created anything but instead replicated natural patterns arose at a certain moment, then came to prominence only at the end of a lengthy debate.


Other books

Other books in this category
Showing items 1 to 11 of 11

 

Reviews | Bibliographic data
  • Full bibliographic data for The Ambivalence of Creation

    Title
    The Ambivalence of Creation
    Subtitle
    Debates Concerning Innovation and Artifice in Early China
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Michael Puett
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 312
    Width: 152 mm
    Height: 228 mm
    Thickness: 24 mm
    Weight: 548 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780804736237
    ISBN 10: 0804736235
    Classifications

    BIC E4L: PHI
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: S2.1
    B&T Book Type: NF
    BIC geographical qualifier V2: 1FPC
    BIC subject category V2: HBLA
    BIC time period qualifier V2: 3D
    B&T Modifier: Region of Publication: 01
    BIC subject category V2: HBJF
    B&T Modifier: Subject Development: 43, 01
    Libri: I-HP
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 15590
    BIC subject category V2: HPDF
    LC subject heading:
    Ingram Subject Code: HP
    B&T General Subject: 431
    Ingram Theme: CHRN/ANCIEN
    BISAC V2.8: HIS008000
    Ingram Theme: CULT/CHINES
    DC22: 951
    B&T Modifier: Geographic Designator: 68
    B&T Modifier: Academic Level: 02
    LC subject heading:
    B&T Modifier: Geographic Designator: 10
    BISAC V2.8: HIS016000
    Abridged Dewey: 951
    B&T Merchandise Category: UP
    B&T Approval Code: A15406030
    BISAC V2.8: HIS002000
    LC subject heading:
    DC21: 931
    B&T Approval Code: A14060000
    LC subject heading:
    LC classification: DS721 .P794 2001
    Thema V1.0: QDHC, NHF, NHC
    Edition statement
    Revised.
    Publisher
    Stanford University Press
    Imprint name
    Stanford University Press
    Publication date
    01 August 2002
    Publication City/Country
    Palo Alto
    Author Information
    Michael J. Puett is John L. Loeb Associate Professor of Humanities at Harvard University.
    Review quote
    "Puett's brilliant textual, intertextual, and contextual analysis allows him to discern heretofore largely neglected aspects and nuances of intellectual controversies and their impanct on early imperial thought... The Ambivalence of Creation is a welcome addition to the field of ancient Chinese thought and culture, as well as mythology, historiography, and literature." - The Journal of American Studies "Lucid, cogent, and stimulating, it should make an instructive and delightful read for anyone who is interested in Chinese philosophy, religion, and history." - Zhou Yiqun, University of Chicago "...a clearly written, well-argued, and important book [that] performs a valuable service to the field by problematizing deeply entrenched assumptions about early Chinese thought." - Journal of Chinese Philosophy
    Back cover copy
    "Puett's brilliant textual, intertextual, and contextual analysis allows him to discern heretofore largely neglected aspects and nuances of intellectual controversies and their impanct on early imperial thought. . . . The Ambivalence of Creation is a welcome addition to the field of ancient Chinese thought and culture, as well as mythology, historiography, and literature."--The Journal of American Studies "Lucid, cogent, and stimulating, it should make an instructive and delightful read for anyone who is interested in Chinese philosophy, religion, and history."--Zhou Yiqun, University of Chicago
    Flap copy
    As early as the Warring States period in China (fourth through third centuries b.c.), debates arose concerning how and under what circumstances new institutions could be formed and legitimated. But the debates quickly encompassed more than just legitimation. Larger issues came to the fore: Can a sage innovate? If so, under what conditions? Where did human culture originally come from? Was it created by human sages? Is it therefore an artificial fabrication, or was it based in part on natural patterns? Is it possible for new sages to emerge who could create something better? This book studies these debates from the Warring States period to the early Han (second century b.c.), analyzing the texts in detail and tracing the historical consequences of the various positions that emerged. It also examines the time's conflicting narratives about the origin of the state and how these narratives and ideas were manipulated for ideological purposes during the formation of the first empires. While tracing debates over the question of innovation in early China, the author engages such questions as the prevailing notions concerning artifice and creation. This is of special importance because early China is often described as a civilization that assumed continuity between nature and culture, and hence had no notion of culture as a fabrication, no notion that the sages did anything other than imitate the natural world. The author concludes that such views were not assumptions at all. The ideas that human culture is merely part of the natural world, and that true sages never created anything but instead replicated natural patterns arose at a certain moment, then came to prominence only at the end of a lengthy debate.
    Table of contents
    Introduction; 1. Domesticating the landscape: notions of ancestors and innovation in the Bronze Age; 2. The craft of humanity: debates over nature and culture in warring states China; 3. Sages, ministers, and rebels: narratives of the emergence of the state; 4. The creation of empire: the emergence and consolidation of imperial rule in China; 5. The tragedy of creation: Sima Qian's reconstruction of the rise of empire in early China; Conclusion; Appendix; Notes; Bibliography; Index.