Wittgenstein and the Xunzi on the Clarification of Language

Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 17 (4):527-545 (2018)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Broadly speaking, language is part of a social activity in both Wittgenstein and Xunzi 荀子, and for both clarification of language is central to their philosophical projects; the goal of this article is to explore the extent of resonance and discord that may be found when comparing these two philosophers. While for Xunzi, the rectification of names (zhengming 正名) is anchored in a regard for establishing, propagating, and/or restoring a harmonious social system, perspicuity is for Wittgenstein represented as a philosophical end in itself. The article ventures study in particular the themes of perspicuity and aspect-perception in Wittgenstein together with the topics of correcting names and the cultivation of the heart-mind (xin 心) in the Xunzi. The aspiration of this project is to gain an overview of the role(s) of clarification projects in different philosophical traditions, all while not overlooking the different historical contexts and philosophical ends of these two philosophers.

Similar books and articles

Wittgenstein and the Analects on the Ethics of Clarification.Thomas D. Carroll - 2016 - Philosophy East and West 66 (4):1148-1167.
The Philosophy of Xunzi.Paul Rakita Goldin - 1996 - Dissertation, Harvard University
Reading Xunzi through Nāmā: Two Ancient Inquiries into the Nature of Names.Laurie L. Patton - 2014 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 13 (1):53-62.
Xunzi: Basic Writings.Burton Watson (ed.) - 2003 - Columbia University Press.
A New Discourse on Xunzi’s Philosophy of Language.Chuanhua Peng - 2011 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 6 (2):193-216.
Cultivation : The goal of Xunzi’s ethical thought. [REVIEW]Shiyou Zhan - 2007 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 2 (1):25-49.
Mencius and Xunzi on Xing.Winnie Sung - 2016 - Philosophy Compass 11 (11):632-641.
Wittgenstein on Mind and Language.David G. Stern - 1995 - New York, US: Oxford University Press.
Yu in the Xunzi: Can Desire by Itself Motivate Action?Winnie Sung - 2012 - Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 11 (3):369-388.
Wittgenstein's Impact on the Philosophy of Education.Paul Standish - 2018 - Philosophical Investigations 41 (2):223-240.


Added to PP

178 (#75,039)

6 months
114 (#8,769)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Thomas D. Carroll
Chinese University of Hong Kong (Shenzhen)

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations