Reading Ji Kang's Essays: Xuanxue in Early-Medieval China

New York, NY: Routledge (2021)
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Abstract

This is the first English-language book on the philosophy of Ji Kang. Moreover, it offers the first systematic treatment of his philosophy, thus filling a significant gap in English-language scholarship on early medieval Chinese literature and philosophy. David Chai brings to light Ji Kang's Neo-Daoist heritage and explores the themes in his writings that were derived from classical Daoism, most notably the need for humanity to return to a more harmonious co-existence with Nature to further our own self-understanding. His analysis is unique in that it balances translation and annotation with expositing the creative philosophizing of Neo-Daoism. Chai analyzes the entirety of Ji Kang's essays, exploring his philosophical reflections on music, aesthetics, ethics, self-cultivation, and fate. Reading Ji Kang/s Essays will be of interest to scholars and students of Chinese philosophy and literature. It offers the first comprehensive philosophical examination of a heretofore neglected figure in Neo-Daoism.

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David Chai
Chinese University of Hong Kong

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