Features 5 Chun-chieh Huang and Erik Zürcher, editors. Time and Space in Chinese Culture. Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1995. 400 pp. Hardcover, isbn 90-04-10287-6. Time and space are the warp and weft of virtually any Weltanschauung. Yet despite their essential importance as fundamental philosophical concepts, they have not figured prominently in American discussions of Chinese intellectual history. That a group of European and Taiwanese scholars have contributed to a lengthy anthology of essays examining them reflects, perhaps, the more metaphysically attuned sensibilities of these two academic communities, at least as compared to the American sinological community. One of the overall achievements, purportedly, of Time and Space in Chinese Culture is its corrective for "our usual conception of the Kantian 'forms of intuition' as being transcendental and indifferently general. These Kantian 'forms' of space and time rather are culture-specific themselves, concretely spaced and timed in various cultural-historical theatres. . . ."' While Time and Space in Chinese Culturéis indeed a sophisticated collection of theoretically important essays on topics related primarily to Chinese intellectual history, the anti-Kantian context they are given is surely overstated philosophically, though it does accurately capture one level of the volume's underlying significance as a whole.
China Review International – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Mar 30, 1997
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