The Craft of a Chinese Commentator: Wang Bi on the Laozi, Volume 1

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SUNY Press, Jan 6, 2000 - History - 361 pages
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"By carefully reconstructing Wang Bi's Laozi text as well as his commentary, this book explores Wang Bi's craft as a scholarly commentator who is also a philosopher in his own right. By situating his work within the context of other competing commentaries and extracting their way of reading the Laozi, this book shows how the Laozi has been approached in many different ways, ranging from a philosophical underpinning for a particular theory of political rule to a guide to techniques of life-prolongation. Amidst his competitors, however, Wang Bi stands out through a literary and philosophical analysis of the Laozi that manages to "use the Laozi to explain the Laozi," rather than imposing an agenda on the text. Through a critical adaptation of several hundred years of commentaries on the classics, Wang Bi reaches a scholarly level in the art of understanding that is unmatched anywhere else in the world." --Book Jacket.
  

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User Review  - Alex - Goodreads

Brilliant! I wish I knew about Interlocking Parallel Style a long time ago. Read full review

Contents

Wang Bi A Biographical Sketch
9
Wang Bis Afterlife
20
The System of the Classics
27
A Sketch of Commentary Strategies during the Han Dynasty
31
Technique and the Philosophy of Structure Interlocking Parallel Style in Laozi and Wang Bi
53
The Discovery of Parallel Style in Western Scholarship
55
Molecular Coherence
57
Open Interlocking Parallel Style in the Laozi
62
The Potentiality of the Texts Comparing Different Commentary Construction of the Laozi
176
Laozi 171
177
Laozi 6
209
Laozi 11
231
Conclusions
249
The Craft of Wang Bis Commentary
257
Integration of Commentary and Text
258
Emphatic Rejection of Other Readings
264

Closed Interlocking Parallel Style in the Laozi
76
Interlocking Parallel Style in Early Texts Outside the Laozi
96
Interlocking Parallel Style in Wang Bis Time
105
Conclusion
110
Deconstructing and Constructing Meaning
115
Kongzi and Laozi
120
The Status of the Laozi and the Texts Ascribed to Confucius
139
The Implied Reader and His Education
142
The Countertexts
150
The Homogeneity Hypothesis
170
Explaining Metaphors Similes Comparisons and Symbols
266
Insertion of Subject
270
Defining Terms through Equivalence
275
Translating the Text
276
Merging Terms and Structures
281
Conclusions
298
Notes
301
Bibliography
337
Index
351
Copyright

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About the author (2000)

Rudolf G. Wagner is Professor of Chinese Studies at the Institute of Chinese Studies, University of Heidelberg, Germany. His previous books include Reenacting the Heavenly Vision: The Role of Religion in the Taiping Rebellion, The Contemporary Chinese Historical Drama: Four Studies, and Inside a Service Trade: Studies in Contemporary Chinese Prose. He received the Leibnitz Award for scholarly excellence from the German Research Foundation in 1993.

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