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Manifest the Hidden: Wen 文 and Zhi 質 as Conceptual Pair in Early Chinese Thought

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Abstract

This thesis aims to explore the often-neglected conceptual pair of wen 文 and zhi 質 and their interconnectedness in early Chinese thought. Through a comprehensive survey of texts spanning from approximately the fifth or fourth century B.C.E. to the first century C.E., the study aims to shed light on the multifaceted meanings and implications encapsulated within the wen-zhi pair. A particular emphasis will be placed on analyzing the vocabulary utilized within this discourse. Employing a meticulous analysis that includes textual comparison and exploration of intertextuality, the research seeks to unravel how ancient thinkers engaged in a rich discourse, probing the moral and political dimensions of ritual practices within the framework of wen and zhi as an interconnected conceptual pair. This discourse encompasses a diverse spectrum of themes, ranging from the cultivation of individual character to intricate debates concerning differentiated and undifferentiated social orders, as well as the symbolic representation of dynastic authority.

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Description

127 pages

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Date Issued

2023-08

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Keywords

Chinese Philosophy; Chinese Political Thought; Chinese Religion; Early China; Intellectual History; Ritual Theory

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Union Local

NAICS

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Committee Chair

McNeal, Robin

Committee Co-Chair

Committee Member

Admussen, Nicholas

Degree Discipline

Asian Studies

Degree Name

M.A., Asian Studies

Degree Level

Master of Arts

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Government Document

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

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dissertation or thesis

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