Sat

05

Nov

2011

Chinese Canon - Qing "Classics" and "Philosophies"

The most "influential" Qing scholars / philosophers are essentially 5 persons:

 

Three from the transition from Qing to Ming in the 17th century:

- Huang Zongxi (whose Ming Ru Xue An was already selected)

- Gu Yanwu (whose Ri Zhi Lu was already selected)

2. Wang Fuzhi - was already mentioned in the Qing "Histories" category - yet because his work was a historical commentary, I don't feel that should be included in Canonical text list. Also, compared with Huang and Gu, Wang was not well known until the 19th century when his works were collected and printed. Even though nowadays he is considered the more important philosopher among the three (and probably among all philosophers in Qing), he may not make it to the canonical list based on "influence". If a text is selected (he has works across the whole traditional Chinese learning spectrum, including poetry), I may choose his Zhang Zi Zheng Meng Zhu.

 

Two from the 18th century - pinnacle of Qing learning:

1. Dai Zhen - was a famous scholar, while also wrote a philosophical (disguised as philological) work Meng Zi Zi Yi Shu Zheng ("Glossary on Words from Mencius") which was influential to other philosophers in the next and the next next generation.

- Zhang Xuecheng - he was like Wang Fuzhi in the way that now his reputation as a thinker surpasses Dai, but he was not a celebrated thinker / scholar during his own time. His work is also about Classics and Philosophy, but his prime forte in historiographical theory that my list excludes.  

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