Marcel Granet

Marcel Granet was born on the 29th of Februrary 1884 in Luc-en-Diois, France. As a sociologist, ethnologist, sinologist and a follower of Emile Durkheim and Edouard Chavannes, Marcel Granet was one of the first to bring sociological research methodology to the study of China. He was revered in his time as a sociological sinologist (or sinological sociologist), as well as a member of the Durkheimian School of Sociology. He died in Sceaux, Hauts-de-Seine, France on the 25th of November 1940. After earning his agrégation in history in 1907, Granet was appointed to teach history at a lycée at Bastia, on the island of Corsica. In 1908, he received a grant through the Fondation Thiers to pursue research on feudalism. Granet sought Edouard Chavannes in order to ask for his advice as to how to pursue studies into the Japanese, whom in turn counselled Granet to begin with Chinese as the step towards Japanese studies, though he did warn him that he would get entangled in Chinese. In 1911, Granet published his first work, a pamphlet entitled “Contre l’alcoolisme, un programme socialiste,” and that same year, he left the Fondation Thiers upon receiving a grant from the French government to study classical Chinese texts in China. In Beijing, he met the Andre d’Hormon who possessed great knowledge of Chinese and Chinese scholars. In 1912 Granet sent Chavannes a paper, “Coutumes matrimoniales de la Chine antique” upon the latter’s request, which Chavannes submitted for publication in the T’oung Pao, which was a major sinological journal. After returning from China in 1913, during which the Republic of China replaced the Qing Dynasty, Granet earned a teaching position in the history department at the Lycée de Marseille in March, and in October, at the Lycée de Montpellier. In December, after Chavannes resigned his post, Granet was appointed the former’s position as the Directeur d’Études pour les religions d’Extrême-Orient at the École Pratique des Hautes Études. Like most men of his era, and of his promotion, Granet served in World War I from 1914–1918, earning the Croix de Guerre and even stayed briefly in Beijing in 1918 while on a mission there. He continued his studies of China and worked on two doctoral theses during the war. In 1919, Granet returned to France and married Marie Terrien. In 1922, upon a request from Maurice Solovine to write a short book for the series “science et civilization,” Granet composed The Religion of the Chinese People within the time of six weeks while traveling back and forth between Paris and Tonnerre (Yonne), where his wife taught at a lycée and cared for their infant son. In 1925, he became the professor of geography, history, and institutions of the Far East at the École Nationale des Langues Orientales Vivantes, and in 1926, helped to establish the Institut des Hautes Études Chinoises. From then on, he worked there as the administrator and professor of Chinese and Chinese civilization. Sadly, war was in the air and two years after his friend Mauss became the president of the fifth section of religious science at l’École Pratique, Britain declared war on Germany, and in 1940, Granet replaced Mauss upon resignation. Mauss, whom was of Jewish heritage, sought to “safeguard the interests” of the school. One month later, after the defeat of the French Republic at the hands of the German army, Granet died at Sceaux at the age of 56. Mauss considered him one of his greatest and most beloved friends. His publications include Fêtes et chansons anciennes de la Chine (1919), La religion des Chinois (1922), Danses et légendes de la Chine ancienne (1926), La civilisation chinoise (1929), La pensée chinoise (1934), La féodalité chinoise (1952).

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Ivor Armstrong Richards

Ivor Armstrong Richards was born on the 26th of Februrary 1893 in Cheshire England. As an educator, literary critic and rhetorician, he contributed to the foundations of the New Criticism, which emphasised the close reading of a literary text, especially in poetry. He initially studied history of Magdalene College in Cambridge but switched his focus to moral sciences and philosophy after he was introduced to C.K. Ogden by his advisor. Richards’ unique views on understanding and language perhaps derived from attending lectures, particularly on his disagreement with G.E. Moore on the matter of whether few people mean what they say or that no one could say what they meant. Three years after he graduated with the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree, he once again met C.K. Ogden in 1918 and began to outline and co-author the book in which they were famous for, The Meaning of Meaning, which was published piecemeal in a quarterly journal that Ogden published as an aid to the war. In 1919, Richards was invited by Professor Mansfield Forbes of Clare College to give a lecture on the contemporary novel and the theory of criticism. Then was appointed as a lecturer in English and moral sciences at Magdalene College in 1922, co-authoring The Foundation of Aesthetics with James Woods and C.K. Ogden. Richards and Ogden worked on Basic English, which was a collection of 850 words that covered the needs of everyday life in English. During their work, they realised that everything could be said with under one thousand words through the substitution of descriptive phrases for specific words. In this, Richards believed that Basic English could be used to teach English as a second language and spent several years in China trying to establish it as a standard teaching method. In 1939, Richards was invited by Harvard University to direct the Commission of English Language Studies to produce Basic English textbooks and train teachers in the method of Basic English. The Rockefeller Foundation also awarded him a study grant to study cartooning and animation of Walt Disney Studios, where he developed a universal script which could express a variety of situations. In this time, he produced a lot of textbooks with Christine M. Gibson for teaching Basic English in a variety of languages. Despite how useful Basic English was to teach English as a second language, it never became the standard teaching method in any part of the world. He began writing poetry at the age of sixty and died on the 7th of September, 1979, but not before publishing several volumes. His most famous publications include The Meaning of Meaning: A Study of the Influence of Language upon Thought and of the Science of Symbolism and The Foundations of Aesthetics.

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Noel Joseph Terence Montgomery Needham

Noel Joseph Terence Montgomery Needham was born on the 6th of December 1900 in London, England, the United Kindgom. He was a scientist, historian and sinologist, known to his scientific research and written works on the history of Chinese science and technology. In 1941, he was elected a follow of the Royal Society and later in 1971 a fellow of the British Academy. In 1992, the Queen conferred on him the Companionship of Honour. He died on the 24th of March 1995 in Cambridge, England. Although he was known as a biochemist, his career made unexpected turns during and after the Second World War. Three Chinese scientists, Lu Guizhen, Wang Yinglai and Shen Shichang came to Cambridge University to for graduate studies, the former of whom taught him Chinese. Under the orders and direction of the Royal Society, Needham became the director of the Sino-British Science Co-Operation Office in Chongqing from 1942 to 1946, during which he made many long and small journeys through war-torn China. He purchased many historical and scientific books on his journeys, which he shipped back to Britain through diplomatic channels and formed the foundations of his later research. He even met Zhou Enlai of the Communist Part of China, as well as numerous scholars, such as the painter, Wu Zuoren, and the meteorologist, Zhu Kezhen. He became the first head of the Natural Sciences Section of UNESCO in Paris, France. However, after two years, American suspicions over scientific co-operation with communists intensified, Needham resigned in 1948 and returned to Gonville, Caius College. He taught biochemistry until 1966, but he devoted all of his energy time to Chinese History until 1990, when he retired. His publications include Chinese Science, the series of books entitled Science and Technology in China.

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Chenshan Tian

Chenshan Tian earned his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, and he has lived, taught and given public lectures in Hawai’i, in North Dakota, and in China. Professor Tian started his teaching career in China at Beijing Foreign Studies University in 2005 and is currently the Director of the Center for East-West Relations, which operates under the egis of the School of International Relations and Diplomacy at BFSU. In October 2009, Dr. Tian was elected to the post of Director of the International Confucian Association. As a contemporary Chinese-American academic, Chenshan Tian specializes in comparative Western and Chinese political philosophy. Recently, his research has focused on exploring the differences between Eastern and Western world views, alternative ways of thinking, and different forms of scientific understanding. His book, Chinese Dialectics: From Yijing to Marxism, focuses on explaining the fundamental differences between Chinese and Western Marxism. This work makes the simple but profound observation that much of the history of Western thought, including scientific thought, has essentially been derived from, and limited by the Christian faith in a transcendent “God.” This model can be expanded to involve an ontology of Being and Nonbeing, a teleological order from beginning to end, and a plethora of dualisms, such as a final distinction between the natural world and human culture, time and space, mind and body, ontology and epistemology, and so on. Tian advocates an intellectual world derived from the Yijing, which seems much more in tune with the mysteries of organic life, with human behavior, and with the nature of material and energy inherent in quantum mechanics and in the relativity theories of modern physics.

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Jim Behuniak

Jim Behuniak is Associate Professor and Chair of the Philosophy Department at Colby College, where he teaches courses in Asian philosophy, American philosophy, and the Philosophy of Religion. He was recently a Fulbright Senior Scholar in the Philosophy Department of National Taiwan University (2014-2015), where he taught seminars in American and Comparative philosophy. He earned his M.A. in 1997 and his Ph.D. in Comparative Philosophy from the University of Hawai’i in 2002. His research focuses in the areas of pre-Qin Chinese and classical American philosophies. He is author of Mencius on Becoming Human (SUNY Press, 2005) and co-editor with Roger T. Ames of 孟子心性之學Studies of Mencius on Feeling and Nature (Social Sciences Academic Press, Beijing, 2004). He has authored several articles in Chinese and Comparative philosophy for edited volumes and journals, such as Philosophy East and West, Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy, Journal of Chinese Philosophy, and Asian Philosophy. Forthcoming work includes a study of the body and culture in Daoist philosophy, entitled “Animal Body Standpoints in the Zhuangzi,” and a projected two-volume work exploring the historical and philosophical relationship between the American philosopher John Dewey and Chinese thought.

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Hans-Georg Moeller

Hans-Georg Moeller is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Macau. His research focuses on Chinese and Comparative Philosophy and on Social and Political thought. He is the author of The Philosophy of the Daodejing, (in Chinese: 道德经的哲学。北京: 人民出版社, 2010), The Moral Fool: A Case for Amorality, and The Radical Luhmann, all published by Columbia University Press. He has also written and published many other scholarly books and articles.

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Ian Sullivan, Instructor, Seattle University

Currently an Instructor of Philosophy at Seattle University (USA). Received BA in Chinese religions at the George Washington University where he wrote a thesis on Friedrich Nietzsche, Xunzi, and Zhuangzi and their respective approaches to self-cultivation; then studied Chinese philosophy at the University of Hawai’i. His dissertation, “The Ethics of Vital Relationality: Care Ethics, Confucian Role Ethics, and the Challenge to Modern Moral Philosophy,” takes seriously the relationality of persons and draws out the implications this has for ethical and political philosophy. He published an article on Confucianism and Simone de Beauvoir in Hypatia, three translations of contemporary Chinese philosophy in Frontiers of Philosophy in China, and several book reviews on Chinese philosophy and culture.

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Robin Wang

Robin Wang is a Professor of Philosophy and the Director of the Asian and Pacific Studies Program at Loyola Marymount University. She recently finished a book entitled Yinyang: The Way of Heaven and Earth in Chinese Culture which was published by Cambridge University Press. She is the editor of Chinese Philosophy in an Era of Globalization and Images of Women in Chinese Thought and Culture: Writings from the Pre-Qin Period to the Song Dynasty, and she is co-editor of Internal Alchemy: Self, Society, and the Quest for Immortality and Reason and Insight: Western and Eastern Perspectives on the Pursuit of Moral Wisdom.

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Chenyang Li is a Professor of Philosophyand Chair of the Department ofPhilosophy at the Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. His academicarea includes Confucian Philosophy, traditional Chinese cultural issues, Value theory, and comparative Chinese and Western philosophy. His major works include:Confucian Philosophy of Harmony (Routledge, 2014), The Tao Encounters the West: Explorations in Comparative Philosophy (State University of New York Press, 1999), The Sage and the Second Sex (Open Court, 2000), The East Asian Challenge for Democracy: Political Meritocracy in Comparative Perspective (with Daniel Bell, Cambridge University Press, 2013), Moral Cultivation and Confucian Character (with Peimin Ni, State University of New York Press, 2014), and Chinese Metaphysics and its Problems (with Franklin Perkins, Cambridge University Press, 2015). He also published over a hundred academic papers in various professional journals.

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Roger T· Ames (Roger T.Ames)

Roger T. Ames was born in 1947 in Toronto, Canada. As a professor at the University of Hawaii, an advisor to Nishan Shengyuan Academy, Chairman of the World Association of Confucian Culture Studies and Vice Chairman of the International Confucian Association, he is an internationally famous expert in Sinology. He is a leading figure in Chinese & Western philosophy and is famous in China and abroad for his translation of books such as theAnalects of Confucius,Sun Tzu’s Art of War,Huainan Tzu andTao Te Ching He was the Chief Editor toPhilosophy of the Occident and Orientas well as theInternational Chinese Book Reviewand the author ofConfucian Philosophical Thinking,Thinking from the Han: Self, Truth, and Transcendence in Chinese and Western Culture,Anticipating China: Thinking Through the Narratives of Chinese and Western Culture,the Art of Rulership: A Study into Chinese Political ThoughtandDemocracy if the Dead: Dewey, Confucius and the Hope for Democracy in China. Roger T. Ames once received the guidance of Liu Dianjue and became proficient in classical Chinese, then to one of the most outstanding modern scholars of Classical Studies. In 2013, he was awarded the "Confucius Culture Award" by the 6th World Confucian Congress. Then he won the second "Huilin Prize Award" in 2016.…
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