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Xunzi and the Essentialist Mode of Thinking about Human Nature

Authors Chong, Kim-chong
Issue Date 2005
Source (1) International Conference on Confucianism: Retrospect and Prospect. University of Toronto, Canada. (2) Conference on Chinese Philosophy in Analytical Perspectives, National Chengchi University, Taipei, Taiwan, September 1-2, 2005 and September 16-17, 2005
Summary In his essay “Philosophy of Human Nature,” Antonio Cua argues that the term “bad” in Xunzi’s statement that “Human nature is bad” is to be taken in a consequential sense. This goes against a common tendency to read the Xunzi in what I refer to as the essentialist mode of thinking. In this paper, I show how it is that the consequential reading of “bad” and other features that Professor Cua describes offer a significant understanding of Xunzi’s position as a non-essentialist one.
Language English
Format Conference paper
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