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Thread: Fathoming the Cosmos and Ordering the World: The Yijing

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    Default Fathoming the Cosmos and Ordering the World: The Yijing

    Hi all,

    Yesterday I received a very interesting tip from Harmen Mesker about a new book, by Richard J. Smith, to be released in April:

    Fathoming the Cosmos and Ordering the World: The Yijing (I Ching, or Classic of Changes) and Its Evolution in China (Richard Lectures) (Hardcover)

    From Amazon's review:

    Review
    "In the West this book stands very much alone." --Edward Shaughnessy, University of Chicago, editor of China: Empire and Civilization A major contribution to the fields of Chinese intellectual history and religion. To my knowledge it is the first work in a Western language that attempts an overall picture of the place of the Yijing in Chinese history and culture."--Joseph A. Adler, Kenyon College, author of Chinese Religious Traditions

    Book Description
    Fathoming the Cosmos and Ordering the World is the first full-length study in any Western language of the development of the Yijing in China from earliest times to the present. Drawing on the most recent scholarship in both Asian and Western languages, Richard J. Smith offers a fresh perspective on virtually every aspect of Yijing theory and practice for some three thousand years. Smith introduces the reader to the major works, debates, and schools of interpretation surrounding this ancient text, and he shows not only how the Book of Changes was used in China as a book of divination but also how it served as a source of philosophical, psychological, literary, and artistic inspiration.
    Among its major contributions, this study reveals with many vivid examples the richness, diversity, vitality, and complexity of traditional Chinese thought. In the process, it deconstructs a number of time-honored interpretive binaries that have adversely affected our understanding of the Yijing--most notably the sharp distinction between the "school of images and numbers" ( xiangshu) and the "school of meanings and principles" ( yili). The book also demonstrates that, contrary to prevailing opinion among Western scholars, the rise of "evidential research" ( kaozheng xue) in late imperial China did not necessarily mean the decline of Chinese cosmology. Smith's study reveals a far more nuanced intellectual outlook on the part of even the most dedicated kaozheng scholars, as well as the remarkable persistence of Chinese "correlative" thinking to this very day. Finally, by exploring the fascinating modern history of the Yijing, Fathoming the Cosmos and Ordering the World attests to the tenacity, flexibility, and continuing relevance of this most remarkable Chinese classic.
    Of course, I pre-ordered a copy.

  2. #2
    jesed Guest

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    Me too...¡¡¡

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    ....And so did I.Are you getting a commision,Luis? Anyway thanks for the info.
    Sergio

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    Quote Originally Posted by sergio View Post
    ....And so did I.Are you getting a commision,Luis? Anyway thanks for the info.
    Sergio
    Nope, Harmen is...

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    Hola Luis;
    Did you get your copy of this book?I ordered mine but so far,nothing.Aparently it is a very limited edition.Any suggestions?
    Sergio

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    Quote Originally Posted by sergio View Post
    Hola Luis;
    Did you get your copy of this book?I ordered mine but so far,nothing.Aparently it is a very limited edition.Any suggestions?
    Sergio
    LOL!!! Talk about synchronicity!! I just received mine, five minutes ago. I haven't even opened the box yet... Forget about Amazon, I canceled my order with them. I then ordered it directly from the University of Virginia Press. If it is any consolation for the delay, they just printed the books.

    Order here, and soon. As you say, they print limited quantities:

    http://www.upress.virginia.edu/books/smith.HTM

    Un abrazo,

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    Hola Luis;
    Thank you for the info.I just ordered it through the link provided.
    Sergio

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    Me too
    Thanks

    LiSe
    'Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.'
    < Cesar A. Cruz >

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    HeyLuis & HeyLise;
    I got my copy like a week ago and ,although I did not have that much time available to read,in the past weekend I did manage to sink my teeth into(yes,Luis it is hard cover,I know,my dentures....)and it is a fascinating read so far.Smith certainly put things in perspective with this "biography of the Yijing" as he describe it in his introduction.I particularly enjoyed the Han Dynasty chapter which corroborated my impression upon reading Nielsen's book:it is a convoluted mess of overcomplicated theories with rules later to be dismissed,image and number symbolisms added ad nauseum..I don't know,man-no wonder in the Song dynasty they said "the hell with it-let's keep it simple and to the point".I am just starting the Song Dynasty chapter.Thanks for the tip,once again.BTW,I also order Stephen Field's book too.
    Sergio

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    Hola Sergio,

    Glad you liked the book (to the point you had to taste it... ). Indeed, it is a great work by Richard Smith. Crazy time for Yixue, the Han period. Very "Renaissance" in many ways. Then a long pause until the sages of the Song period got the time and support to use their heads again, in innovating ways, in connection with the Yi.

    Yesterday I received my copy of Field's book, much earlier than I expected. It is a small book but full of interesting information.

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