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Karyn L. Lai [27]Karyn Lai [24]Karyn Lynne Lai [2]
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Karyn L. Lai
University of New South Wales
  1. An Introduction to Chinese Philosophy (2nd Ed.).Karyn Lai - 2018 - Cambridge University Press.
    This comprehensive introductory textbook to early Chinese philosophy covers a range of philosophical traditions which arose during the Spring and Autumn and Warring States periods in China, including Confucianism, Mohism, Daoism, and Legalism. It considers concepts, themes and argumentative methods of early Chinese philosophy and follows the development of some ideas in subsequent periods, including the introduction of Buddhism into China. The book examines key issues and debates in early Chinese philosophy, cross-influences between its traditions and interpretations by scholars up (...)
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  2. Li in the "Analects": Training in Moral Comptence and the Question of Flexibility.Karyn Lai - 2006 - Philosophy East and West 56 (1):69 - 83.
    It is proposed here that the Confucian li, norms of appropriate behavior, be understood as part of the dynamic process of moral self-cultivation. Within this framework li are multidimensional, as they have different functions at different stages in the cultivation process. This novel interpretation refocuses the issue regarding the flexibility of li, a topic that is still being debated by scholars. The significance of this proposal is not restricted to a new understanding of li. Key features of the various stages (...)
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  3.  87
    The Cicada Catcher: Learning for Life.Karyn L. Lai - 2019 - In Karyn L. Lai & Wai-wai Chiu (eds.), Skill and Mastery Philosophical Stories from the Zhuangzi. UK: Rowman and Littlefield International. pp. 143 - 162.
    The cicada catcher focuses as much on technique as he does on outcomes. In response to Confucius’ question, he articulates in detail the learning he has undertaken to develop techniques at each level of competence. This chapter explains the connection between the cicada catcher’s development of technique and his orientation toward outcomes. It uses details in this story to contribute to recent discussions in epistemology on the cultivation of technique.
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  4. Ziran and Wuwei in the Daodejing : An Ethical Assessment.Karyn Lai - 2007 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 6 (4):325-337.
    In Daoist philosophy, the self is understood as an individual interdependent with others, and situated within a broader environment. Within this framework, the concept ziran is frequently understood in terms of naturalness or nature while wuwei is explained in terms of non-oppressive government. In many existing accounts, little is done to connect these two key Daoist concepts. Here, I suggest that wuwei and ziran are correlated, ethical, concepts. Together, they provide a unifying ethical framework for understanding the philosophy of the (...)
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  5.  14
    Ming in the Zhuangzi Neipian: Enlightened Engagement.Karyn L. Lai & Wai Wai Chiu - 2013 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 40 (3-4):527-543.
    In this article, we present an account of ming 明 in the Zhuangzi's Neipian in light of the disagreements among the thinkers of the time. We suggest that ming is associated with the Daoist sage's vision: he sees through the debaters' attempts to win the debates. We propose that ming is primarily a meta-epistemological stance, that is, the sage understands the nature of the debates and does not enter the fray; therefore he does not share the thinkers' anxieties. The sage (...)
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  6. Confucian Moral Thinking.Karyn L. Lai - 1995 - Philosophy East and West 45 (2):249-272.
    By examining fundamental Confucian concepts -- zhengming, ren, li, xiao, shu and dao -- the essay demonstrates that Confucian ways of thinking do not always fit neatly into categories such as 'moral' or rights'. The author provides a positive interpretation of certain Confucian ideas including: the concept of a person as a self- in- relation; the notion of responsibility as particularistic and dependent upon the kinds of relationships one has and the social positions one occupies; and the view of the (...)
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  7.  45
    Global Thinking.Karyn Lai - 2018 - The Philosophers' Magazine 80:64-69.
  8.  89
    Understanding Confucian Ethics: Reflections on Moral Development.Karyn Lai - 2007 - Australian Journal of Professional and Applied Ethics 9 (2).
    The standard criticisms of Confucian ethics appear contradictory. On the one hand, Confucian ethics is deemed overly rule-bound: it is obsolete because it advocates adherence to ancient Chinese norms of proper conduct. On the other hand, Confucian ethics is perceived as situational ethics—done on the run—and not properly grounded in fundamental principles or norms. I give reasons for these disparate views of Confucian ethics. I also sketch an account of Confucian morality that focuses on moral development; in this account the (...)
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  9.  15
    Ming in the Zhuangzi Neipian: Enlightened Engagement.Karyn L. Lai & Wai Wai Chiu - 2013 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 40 (3-4):527-543.
    In this article, we present an account of ming 明 in the Zhuangzi's Neipian in light of the disagreements among the thinkers of the time. We suggest that ming is associated with the Daoist sage's vision: he sees through the debaters' attempts to win the debates. We propose that ming is primarily a meta-epistemological stance, that is, the sage understands the nature of the debates and does not enter the fray; therefore he does not share the thinkers' anxieties. The sage (...)
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  10.  56
    Knowing How and Knowing To.Karyn L. Lai & Stephen Hetherington - 2015 - In Brian Bruya (ed.), The Philosophical Challenge from China. MA, USA: MIT Press. pp. 279 - 302.
    Since the 1940s, Western epistemology has discussed Gilbert Ryle’s distinction between knowledge-that and knowledge-how. Ryle argued that intelligent actions – manifestations of knowledge-how – are not constituted as intelligent by the guiding intervention of knowledge-that: knowledge-how is not a kind of knowledge-that; we must understand knowledge-how in independent terms. Yet which independent terms are needed? In this chapter, we consider whether an understanding of intelligent action must include talk of knowledge-to. This is the knowledge to do this or that now, (...)
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  11.  44
    Confucian Moral Cultivation : Some Parallels with Musical Training.Karyn L. Lai - 2003 - In Kim Chong Chong, Sor-Hoon Tan & C. L. Ten (eds.), The Moral Circle and the Self: Chinese and Western Approaches. Open Court.
  12.  7
    Learning From Chinese Philosophies.Karyn lai - 2006 - Taylor and Francis.
  13. Conceptual Foundations for Environmental Ethics: A Daoist Perspective.Karyn Lai - 2003 - Environmental Ethics 25 (3):247-266.
    The concepts dao and de in the Daodejing may be evoked to support a distinctive and plausible account of environmental holism. Dao refers to the totality of particulars, including the relations that hold between them, and the respective roles and functions of each within the whole. De refers to the distinctiveness of each particular, realized meaningfully only within the context of its interdependence with others, and its situatedness within the whole. Together, dao and de provide support for an ethical holism (...)
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  14.  63
    Practising to Know: Practicalism and Confucian Philosophy.Stephen Hetherington & Karyn Lai - 2012 - Philosophy 87 (3):375-393.
    For a while now, there has been much conceptual discussion about the respective natures of knowledge-that and knowledge-how, along with the intellectualist idea that knowledge-how is really a kind of knowledge-that. Gilbert Ryle put in place most of the terms that have so far been distinctive of that debate, when he argued for knowledge-how's conceptual distinctness from knowledge-that. But maybe those terms should be supplemented, expanding the debate. In that spirit, the conceptual option of practicalism has recently entered the fray. (...)
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  15.  37
    Philosophy and Philosophical Reasoning in the Zhuangzi: Dealing with Plurality.Karyn Lynne Lai - 2006 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 33 (3):365-374.
    The Zhuangzi is noted for its advocacy of many different perspectives—chickens, cicadas, fish and the like. There is much debate in the literature about the implications of Zhuangzi’s pluralist inclinations. I suggest that Zhuangzi highlights the limitations of individual, perspectivally-constrained, knowledge claims. He also spurns the ‘view from nowhere’ and is sceptical about the possibility of an ideal observer. For him, wisdom consists in understanding the epistemological inadequacies of each perspective. I propose that Zhuangzi’s philosophy offers significant insights to an (...)
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  16. The Daodejing: Resources for Contemporary Feminist Thinking.Karyn Lai - 2000 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 27 (2):131–153.
    This paper explores the contribution of early Daoist thought to contemporary feminist philosophy. It has often been noted that the Daodejing stands in contrast to other texts of the same period in its positive evaluation of femininity and of values associated with the feminine. This paper takes a cautious approach to the Daoist concept of the feminine, noting in particular its emphasis on the characteristic of feminine submissiveness. On the other hand, the paper seeks to demonstrate that the Daoist treatment (...)
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  17.  7
    Conceptual Foundations for Environmental Ethics: A Daoist Perspective.Karyn Lai - 2003 - Environmental Ethics 25 (3):247-266.
    The concepts dao and de in the Daodejing may be evoked to support a distinctive and plausible account of environmental holism. Dao refers to the totality of particulars, including the relations that hold between them, and the respective roles and functions of each within the whole. De refers to the distinctiveness of each particular, realized meaningfully only within the context of its interdependence with others, and its situatedness within the whole. Together, dao and de provide support for an ethical holism (...)
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  18.  14
    Understanding Change: The Interdependent Self in its Environment.Karyn L. Lai - 2007 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 34 (s1):81-99.
  19.  58
    Learning From the Confucians: Learning From the Past.Karyn L. Lai - 2008 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 35 (1):97-119.
    A distinguishing characteristic of Confucianism is its emphasis on learning (xue), is a key element in moral self cultivation. This paper discusses why learning from the experiences of those in the past is important in Confucian learning.
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  20.  38
    Judgment in Confucian Ethics. [REVIEW]Karyn L. Lai - 2009 - Sophia 48 (1):77-84.
  21.  12
    Judgment In Confucian Ethics: Review of Jonathan Dancy’s Ethics Without Principles, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2004, 229 Pp., ISBN: 978–0–19–929768–9, Pbk. [REVIEW]Karyn L. Lai - 2009 - Sophia 48 (1):77-84.
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  22.  3
    The.Karyn Lai - 2000 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 27 (2):131-153.
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  23. Philosophy of Xunzi and Antonio S. Cua.Chung-Ying Cheng, Roger T. Ames, Vincent Shen, Kim-Chong Chong, Paul R. Goldin, Karyn L. Lai & Tan Mingran - 2008 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 35 (1):63-78.
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  24.  2
    Assessing Participation Skills: Online Discussions with Peers.Karyn L. Lai - 2012 - Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education 37 (8):933-947.
    Many tertiary-level courses assess students’ participation in tutorial or online discussions. However, in educational and pedagogical research literature, criteria for assessing students’ skills in engaging with peers remain unclear. This article describes an online assignment with a set of participation criteria and a method for assessing the quality of students’ interactions with peers. The assignment focuses on students’ ability to utilise their critical thinking skills while engaging with peers on a particular topic. This includes abilities such as responding to criticism, (...)
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  25.  25
    A Review of Antonio S. Cua's Human Nature, Ritual, and History: Studies in Xunzi and Chinese Philosophy , in Studies in Philosophy and the History of Philosophy, Vol. 43, Washington, D.C., Catholic University of America Press, 2005, 406 Pp., ISBN: 0813213851, Hb. [REVIEW]Karyn L. Lai - 2007 - Sophia 46 (2):203-205.
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  26.  11
    A Review of Antonio S. Cua's, in Studies in Philosophy and the History of Philosophy, Vol. 43, Washington, DC, Catholic University of America Press, 2005, 406 Pp., ISBN: 0813213851, Hb. [REVIEW]Karyn L. Lai - 2007 - Sophia 46 (2):203-205.
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  27.  42
    Clara Wing-Chung Ho, Ed., Biographical Dictionary of Chinese Women: The Qing Period, 1644-1911. New York: M. E. Sharpe, 1998. Hardback. ISBN: 0-7656-0043-9. [REVIEW]Karyn Lynne Lai - 1999 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 26 (2):251-256.
  28. Kam-Por Yu, Julia Tao, and Philip J. Ivanhoe (Eds.), Taking Confucian Ethics Seriously: Contemporary Theories and Applications. [REVIEW]Karyn Lai - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (1):119-124.
     
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  29.  16
    Cultivating a Good Life in Early Chinese and Ancient Greek Philosophy: Perspectives and Reverberations.Karyn L. Lai, Rick Benitez & Hyun Jin Kim (eds.) - 2018 - Bloomsbury.
    Both Ancient Chinese and Greek philosophers provide accounts of the life lived well: a Confucian junzi, a Daoist sage and a Greek phronimos. Cultivation in Early China and Ancient Greece engages in comparative, cross-tradition scholarship and investigates the processes associated with cultivating or nurturing the self in order to live such lives. -/- By focusing on the processes rather than the aims of cultivating a good life, an international team of scholars investigate how a person develops and practices a way (...)
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  30.  20
    Dialogue and Epistemological Humility.Karyn Lai - 2014 - In Jesper Garsdal & Johanna Seibt (eds.), How is Global Dialogue Possible?: Foundational Reseach on Value Conflicts and Perspectives for Global Policy. Berlin: De Gruyter. pp. 69-84.
  31.  39
    Chong, Kim-Chong, Early Confucian Ethics: Concepts and Arguments.Karyn Lai - 2009 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 8 (4):467-470.
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  32.  22
    Critical Notice of Joel J. Kupperman, Learning From Asian Philosophy.Karyn L. Lai - 2003 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 81 (1):126 – 133.
  33. Chinese Philosophy: New Directions and Interdisciplinary Perspectives.Karyn Lai - 2008 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    This anthology presents the distinctive insights of Chinese philosophy and their relevance to contemporary issues in a range of areas: moral philosophy, social and political philosophy, metaphysics, epistemology, environmental ethics, medicine and psychological health. New, especially interdisciplinary research Applies insights in Chinese philosophy from eminent scholars in the field of Chinese philosophy.
     
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  34. Daoism and Confucianism.Karyn L. Lai - 2014 - In Xiaogan Liu (ed.), Dao Companion to Daoist Philosophy. Springer. pp. 489-511.
  35.  86
    Emotional Attachment and Its Limits: Mengzi, Gaozi and the Guodian Discussions.Karyn L. Lai - 2019 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 14 (1):132-151.
    Mengzi maintained that both benevolence (ren 仁) and rightness (yi 義) are naturally-given in human nature. This view has occupied a dominant place in Confucian intellectual history. In Mencius 6A, Mengzi's interlocutor, Gaozi, contests this view, arguing that rightness is determined by (doing what is fitting, in line with) external circumstances. I discuss here some passages from the excavated Guodian texts, which lend weight to Gaozi's view. The texts reveal nuanced considerations of relational proximity and its limits, setting up requirements (...)
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  36.  50
    Environmental Concern: Can Humans Avoid Being Partial? Epistemological Awareness in the Zhuangzi.Karyn L. Lai - 2013 - In Carmen Meinert (ed.), Nature, Environment and Culture in East Asia: The Challenge of Climate Change. Brill. pp. 69-82.
    Discussions of human partiality—anthropocentrism—in the literature in environmental ethics have sought to locate reasons for unnecessary and thoughtless degradation of the earth’s environment. Many of the debates have focused on metaethical issues, attempting to set out the values appropriate for an environmental ethic not constrained within an anthropocentric framework. In this essay, I propose that the fundamental problem with anthropocentrism arises when it is assumed that that is the only meaningful evaluative perspective. I draw on ideas in the Zhuangzi, a (...)
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  37.  52
    Introduction: Feminism and Chinese Philosophy.Karyn Lai - 2000 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 27 (2):127–130.
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  38.  19
    Introduction: New Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Chinese Philosophy.Karyn L. Lai - 2007 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 34 (s1):3-8.
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  39.  29
    Knowing to Act in the Moment: Examples From Confucius ’Analects‘.Karyn L. Lai - 2012 - Asian Philosophy 22 (4):347-364.
    Many scholars note that the Analects, and Confucian philosophy more generally, hold a conception of knowing that more closely approximates ‘knowing-how’ than ‘knowing-that’. However, I argue that this description is not sufficiently sensitive to the concerns of the early Confucians and their focus on self-cultivation. I propose that a particular conception of knowing—knowing to act in the moment—is better suited to capturing the Analects’ emphasis on exemplary lives in actual contexts. These investigations might also contribute to discussions on know-how in (...)
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  40.  67
    Kam-Por Yu, Julia Tao, and Philip J. Ivanhoe (Eds.), Taking Confucian Ethics Seriously: Contemporary Theories and Applications. [REVIEW]Karyn Lai - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (1):119-124.
    Kam-por Yu, Julia Tao, and Philip J. Ivanhoe (eds.), Taking Confucian Ethics Seriously: Contemporary Theories and Applications Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-6 DOI 10.1007/s11712-011-9253-y Authors Karyn Lai, School of History of Philosophy, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia Journal Dao Online ISSN 1569-7274 Print ISSN 1540-3009.
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  41. Learning to Be Reliable: Confucius' Analects.Karyn L. Lai - 2018 - In Karyn L. Lai, Rick Benitez & Hyun Jin Kim (eds.), Cultivating a Good Life in Early Chinese and Ancient Greek Philosophy Perspectives and Reverberations. Bloomsbury. pp. 193-207.
    In the Lunyu, Confucius remarks on the implausibility—or impossibility—of a life lacking in xin 信, reliability (2.22). In existing discussions of Confucian philosophy, this aspect of life is often eclipsed by greater emphasis on Confucian values such as ren 仁 (benevolence), li 禮 (propriety) and yi 義 (rightness). My discussion addresses this imbalance by focusing on reliability, extending current debates in two ways. First, it proposes that the common translation of xin as denoting coherence between a person’s words and deeds (...)
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  42. New Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Chinese Philosophy.Karyn L. Lai - 2007 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 34 (5):3-8.
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  43.  11
    Perkins, Franklin, Heaven and Earth Are Not Humane: The Problem of Evil in Classical Chinese Philosophy: Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2014, 295 Pages. [REVIEW]Karyn Lai - 2016 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 15 (1):135-139.
  44.  36
    Ren: An Exemplary Life.Karyn L. Lai - 2014 - In Amy Olberding (ed.), Dao Companion to the Analects. Springer. pp. 83-94.
    This chapter discusses ren 仁, a major term in the Confucian Analects. It analyzes the range of meanings of ren across different conversations, paying special attention to its associations with other key Confucian terms such as li (禮 behavioural propriety) and zhi (知 understanding). Building on this analysis, the discussion focuses on ren in terms of how it is manifest in a person’s life. In particular, it expresses ren in terms of an exemplary life—a life lived well. The chapter also (...)
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  45.  7
    Reflections on Analogical Thinking: The Centrality of Discretion.Karyn Lai - 2017 - Australasian Philosophical Review 1 (3):229-235.
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  46.  4
    Response to Frank Perkins. [REVIEW]Karyn Lai - 2016 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 15 (1):143-144.
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  47.  5
    Skill and Mastery: Philosophical Stories From the Zhuangzi.Karyn Lai & Wai Wai Chiu - 2019 - Rowman & Littlefield International.
    This valuable collection of illuminating analysis of skill stories from the Zhuangzi, a 4th century BCE Daoist text opens up new lines of inquiry in comparative East-West philosophical debates on skill, cultivation and mastery, as well as cross-disciplinary debates in psychology, cognitive science and philosophy.
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  48. Skill and Mastery Philosophical Stories From the Zhuangzi.Karyn L. Lai & Wai-wai Chiu (eds.) - 2019 - Rowman and Littlefield International.
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  49.  49
    The Routledge Companion to Virtue Ethics Eds. By Lorraine Besser-Jones and Michael Slote. [REVIEW]Karyn Lai - 2018 - Philosophy East and West 68 (2):639-645.
    The Routledge Companion to Virtue Ethics, edited by Lorraine Besser-Jones and Michael Slote, is unusual among the recent crop of handbooks, encyclopedias, and compendiums in philosophy in a couple of respects. First, as well as presenting up-to-date surveys of the field, the Companion includes a number of entries that also engage in argument and negotiate tensions between different positions—some even questioning the nature of virtue ethics itself. These chapters are particularly interesting as they demonstrate the use of philosophical methodology in (...)
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  50. Understanding Change: The Interdependent Self in its Environment.Karyn L. Lai - 2007 - Journal of Chinese Philosophy 34 (5):81-99.
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