Progress or Change? Rethinking the Historical Outlook of the Book of Lord Shang

Contemporary Chinese Thought 47 (2):90-111 (2016)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

EDITOR’S ABSTRACTThis article is a reflection on the nature of “changing with the times” that is put forward in the Book of Lord Shang. The author challenges the modern, predominantly Marxist, portrayal of Shang Yang as the exceptional Warring States master promoting a progressive view of history. The Book of Lord Shang does not prioritize future over the present or present over the past, nor does it envision a large-scale rational understanding of the historical trends, nor the possibility to improve human nature. Like other late Zhou, Qin, and Han sources, some chapters of the book promote the capacity to change with the times as a political expediency in concrete contexts. The author utilizes this understanding to dismiss the still popular conceptualization of Shang Yang as a “progressive” thinker. If this oppressive ideology promoted the idea of progress, then the very idea of progress should be called into question, according to the author.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 74,509

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

On the Origin of Shang and Zhou Law.James D. Sellmann - 2006 - Asian Philosophy 16 (1):49 – 64.
Shang Chün Shu Chin Chu Chin I.Ling-hsü Ho & Yang Shang - 1987 - T Ai-Wan Shang Wu Yin Shu Kuan.
The Book of Lord Shang and the School of Law.J. J. L. Duyvendak - 1976 - Chinese Studies in History 10 (1-2):196-249.
Shang-Tzu.Yang Shang & Ch in Fan - 1970 - I Wen Yin Shu Kuan.

Analytics

Added to PP
2016-11-02

Downloads
13 (#760,206)

6 months
1 (#417,896)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references