Chuang Tzu: The Inner Chapters

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Counterpoint, 1997 - Philosophy - 118 pages
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Revered for millennia in the Chinese spiritual tradition, Chuang Tze stands alongside the Tao Te Ching as a founding classic of Taoism. The Inner Chapters are the only sustained section of this text widely believed to be the work of Chuang Tzu himself, dating to the fourth century B.C.E. But this is an ancient text that yields a surprisingly modern effect. In bold and startling prose, David Hinton's translation captures the "zany texture and philosophical abandon" of the original. The Inner Chapters fantastical passages - in which even birds and trees teach us what they know - offer up a wild menagerie of characters, freewheeling play with language, and surreal humor. And interwoven with Chuang Tzu's sharp instruction on the Tao are short-short stories that are often rough and ribald, rich with satire and paradox. On their deepest level, the Inner Chapters are a meditation on the mysteries of knowledge itself.

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Chuang Tzu: The Inner Chapters

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The Chuang Tzu, named after its author (364-290 B.C.E.), along with the Tao Te Ching, form the basis for philosophical Taoism. Only the "inner chapters," the first seven of the 33, are completely ... Read full review

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About the author (1997)

David Hinton's many translations of classical Chinese poetry and philosophy have earned wide acclaim for creating compelling contemporary texts that convey the actual texture and density of the originals. He has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship as well as numerous fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. In 1997, he received the Landon Translation Award from the Academy of American Poets. He lives in East Calais, Vermont.

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