A stream flowing through Potatso National Park (普達措國家公園), the first national park in China to meet International Union for Conservation of Nature standards (Photo by Mr. Hall)
Our structure today will be as simple and flowing as possible—perhaps in the spirit of our texts?
We will use an example from Mengzi as a way to review our last two discussions.
"Mozi Saves the Song"《墨子救宋》, a graphic novel (lianhuanhua 連環畫) originally published in 1951 by the Chaohua Fine Arts Publishing House and reissued in 2005 by the People's Fine Arts Publishing House.
Life of Mozi:
Times of Mozi:
Consider in small groups:
Exploration of key themes:
Mengzi's Three Moves. Anonymous drawing, China, 20th century. Photo by AKG Images
Last class we delved into Confucius from the perspective of equality. We found evidence from both sides:
With the following list of cards from last class in mind, are there other topics that you think we ought to pause on before we move on? Here were the cards:
Mengzi vs. Xunzi
Start by asking for basic clarifications on the text
Divide into two groups
Statue of Confucius at the entrance of the Confucius Temple in Beijing. Photo by Mr. Hall.
Kudos from last class:
Unit I “Finding a Path” (printable version)
Our first unit together will be framed by the philosophical significance of China’s “Axial Age,” stretching roughly from the birth of Confucius in 551 BCE to the rise of the Qin Empire in 221 BCE. Together we will examine key figures in the early Confucian, Mohist, and Daoist traditions. In each case we will be combining historical context with philosophical texts.
Characters (in order of discussion): Confucius, Mengzi, Xunzi, Mozi, Laozi, and Zhuangzi.
At the end of our unit, you will be asked to write a short essay (2-3 pages) that draws upon two thinkers to analyze an important institution in a community or nation of which you have been a part. Your response should:
What did Confucius believe?
North China Plain during the late Spring and Autumn period (5th century BCE). Source: Wikimedia.
Confucius and his world
Homework: Assignment #102
China before Confucius
We'll partially take our cue from Confucius by looking at government and technology (not culture) as helpful, loose ways of showing the bigger context of our first two units: