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Reconsidering Richard Shusterman’s Somaesthetics

Reconsidering Richard Shusterman’s Somaesthetics In his work on somaesthetics, Richard Shusterman employs Confucianism’s take on ritualized self-cultivation to address blind spots in Euro-American accounts. However, Shusterman’s remarks on the later classical-era thinker Xún Zǐ (荀子) hint at a possible tension with the former’s pragmatism and promotion of somatic self-fashioning. The classical Confucian debate between Mencius (Mèng Zǐ; 孟子) and Xún Zǐ on human nature being either “good” or “bad” broaches issues of somaesthetics, namely as concerns self-cultivation being either internally spontaneous or externally imposed. Looking at this debate can thus help the project of somaesthetics by bringing old, though in this case novel, vocabulary to bear on an issue with which Shusterman wrestles – the “ontic” status of somaesthetic practice. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Pragmatism Brill

Reconsidering Richard Shusterman’s Somaesthetics

Contemporary Pragmatism , Volume 12 (1): 135 – Jun 16, 2015

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2015 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
Subject
Articles
ISSN
1572-3429
eISSN
1875-8185
DOI
10.1163/18758185-01201008
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In his work on somaesthetics, Richard Shusterman employs Confucianism’s take on ritualized self-cultivation to address blind spots in Euro-American accounts. However, Shusterman’s remarks on the later classical-era thinker Xún Zǐ (荀子) hint at a possible tension with the former’s pragmatism and promotion of somatic self-fashioning. The classical Confucian debate between Mencius (Mèng Zǐ; 孟子) and Xún Zǐ on human nature being either “good” or “bad” broaches issues of somaesthetics, namely as concerns self-cultivation being either internally spontaneous or externally imposed. Looking at this debate can thus help the project of somaesthetics by bringing old, though in this case novel, vocabulary to bear on an issue with which Shusterman wrestles – the “ontic” status of somaesthetic practice.

Journal

Contemporary PragmatismBrill

Published: Jun 16, 2015

Keywords: somaesthetics; Confucianism; Mencius; Xún Zǐ; human nature

References