Asian Philosophy 20 (3):225-245 (2010)

Xiufen Lu
Wichita State University
It has been argued that friendship in the Confucian tradition is ultimately reducible to family relationships and, since all family relationships in the Confucian world are hierarchical, friendship (thus conceived and patterned as a family relationship) would also be hierarchical. In opposition to this view, it also has been argued that among the five primary relationships discussed by Confucians, friendship is the only one that could be non-hierarchical, and because of that, friendship is considered dangerous among Confucians. I argue that that while there may be some prima facie plausibility in each of the above-mentioned interpretations in that each accommodates a particular kind of or aspect of friendships, they are problematic in that they fail to recognize the nuanced complexity of Confucian friendship. In this paper, I will develop three separate critical analyses against the above-mentioned positions and develop an alternative reading
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DOI 10.1080/09552367.2010.511023
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References found in this work BETA

The World of Thought in Ancient China.Benjamin Isadore Schwartz - 1985 - Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
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Mencius.Earle J. Coleman - 1972 - Philosophy East and West 22 (1):113-114.

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