Congress Theme: Art and Literature (Click to read the abstracts of the workshops 39 - 44) (in progress) A-40 Contemporary Philosophy in China, Japan and Korea, Towards the Development of a Pan-Asianism (Updated On August 1st 2007) Author : JACYNTHE TREMBLAY
A – 40 CONTEMPORARY PHILOSOPHY IN CHINA, JAPAN AND KOREA, TOWARDS THE DEVELOPMENT OF A PAN-ASIANISM Workshop abstract
Philosophy such as it has been developed since a hundred years in Japan implies a double connection with the traditional thoughts and with the Western philosophy which was introduced in Japan at the beginning of the Meiji era. As for contemporary Chinese philosophy, it is characterized by a distance towards the Chinese tradition but also by its reappropriation, so as to face the shock of modernity caused by the contact with the West. The same may be said concerning Korean philosophy. Much researches has been carried out in recent years concerning contemporary Japanese philosophy. Several efforts have also been made in order to present Chinese philosophy and Korean philosophy. However, these philosophies were rarely put explicitly in relation. Yet, they show many similar features. At the historical level, they are characterized by the relation (graduated very variously) with Western philosophy and by the relation with the autochthonous traditions of thought (religious and ethical).
On the level of the lexicon, an extremely interesting movement to and fro occurred: the first philosophers of the Meiji era used the Chinese characters to bring the Western philosophical terminology into the Japanese language. In return, it is by the means of Japan and its linguistic creations (starting from Chinese) that Western philosophy was introduced in China. This workshop represents an effort in order to gather researchers working in the field of Chinese, Japanese and Korean contemporary philosophy, to draw the attention to the ties already established between them, to give rise to new research topics, and finally to promote a research's field explored very little up to now, namely a pan-Asianism in contemporary philosophy. Key words: Japanese philosophy, Chinese philosophy, East-Occident, tradition-modernity, pan-Asianism, idealism, religions, neo-Confucianism COORDINATOR: JACYNTHE TREMBLAY
· CHEUNG Ching-yuen Chinese University of Hong Kong v Some reflections on studying philosophy in Japan and China Karl Löwith, who has taught philosophy in Tohoku University from 1936 to 1941, pointed out that Japanese tried to learn Western philosophy seriously but struggled to live in two different ways, as they wear two kinds of clothes – kimono at home and foreign suit in the office. However, most Japanese people are practically not wearing kimono any more. Can we speak the same on the philosophical movement in China? What can we learn from the lesson of philosophy in Japan?
· Thorsten BOTZ-BORNSTEIN University of Zhejiang (China) v Pan-Asianist Philosophy between Japan and China The Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore and the Japanese OKAKURA Kazuo and NOGUCHI Yonejirô played an important role during the formative phase of Pan-Asianism. In China, Tagore’s thoughts were studied by writers such as GUO Moruo, XU Zhimo, and XIE Binxin. TAKEUCHI Yoshimi states that “a special issue on Tagore’s work was published by China’s most influential literary journal. Simultaneously KU Hung-ming, LIANG Sou-ming, and CHANG Chun-mai attempted to strengthen Confucian traditions while TAI Xu and LIANG Qichao strengthened Buddhist traditions. In spite of the negative Japanese and Chinese receptions of Tagore’s attempts to conserve Okakura’s and Noguchi’s spiritual values, it would certainly be wrong to say that Asians would have been generally deaf to such ideas. In 1919, a “New Asianism” was propagated by the Chinese Marxist thinker LI Dazhao, who opposed to Japanese imperialist Asianism a real solidarity of Asian peoples.
· Ralf MUELLER Humboldt-Universität (Berlin) v The Religion and Philosophy of Dôgen The discovery of the Zen Buddhist Dôgen Kigen for the modern history of thought is usually attributed to Watsuji Tetsurô. However, if we go further back in time, we find a great number of contributions to the study of Dôgen. The epistemologist Yodono Yôjun wrote one of the most interesting. Published in 1911 in the magazine « Oriental Philosophy », his article treats for the first time « the religion and philosophy of Dôgen » and proposes a systematization of his thought. In my presentation, I analyze Yodono’s argumentation questioning his division into « religion » and « philosophy ». Are these western terms the adequate base to comprehend the thought of Dôgen?
· KEE Woo-Tak University Hong-ik (South Korea) v Comparative study on Humanity ; Western and Korean Philosophy This theme is aiming at exploring the theoretical foundation of ethics through the comparative study of the « Pragmatic Anthropology » by German philosopher, Immanuel Kant with Sung-Ri study (Philosophical thought for Rationalism by the Korean leading Confucian Proponents in 16th Century, Toegye and Yulgok. Sung-Ri study dealt with the problem on how the relation of the two factors (Ri and Ki) between the 4 Virtues(Reasons) and 7 Emotions is playing a vital role in the decisive function of the moral mind.