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Research Seminar: "Reception of the "Zhuangzi" in the West: Translations, Interpretations and Inf...
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Topic:  Research Seminar: "Reception of the "Zhuangzi" in the West: Translations, Interpretations and Influence"
posted itemPosted - 02/02/2010 :  10:30:56


Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics

Research Seminar


  Reception of the "Zhuangzi" in the West: Translations, Interpretations and Influence


Presented by


 Professor Richard John Lynn

 Professor Emeritus, University of Toronto



23 February 2010 (Tuesday)


4:30 - 6:00pm


P4302 (Level 4, Purple Zone), Academic Building, CityU





From the first translation by Frederic Henry Balfour in 1881 through works of translation and interpretation up to now, 130 years later, the Zhuangzi has inspired, challenged, informed and enriched Western intellectual and spiritual life.  This Power Point Presentation explores the character, quality, and impact of such translators and interpretors of the Zhuangzi as Georg von der Gabelentz (1888), Herbert Giles (1889) and his enthusiastic supporters Oscar Wilde (1890) and the liberal Anglo-Catholic churchman A. L. Moore (1890), the missionary, sinologist and translator James Legge (1891), the Jesuit missionary and sinologue Léon Wieger (1910), the great sinologe Richard Wilhelm (1912), the equally great French sinologue Henri Maspero (1922), the expatriate lawyer, long-time Peking resident, poet, translator and quasi-sinologist Vincenz Hundhausen (1926), historian of Chinese philosophy and philosopher Fung Yu-lan (1933), the eminent Jewish philosopher Martin Buber (1951), popularizer of Chinese literature in the West Lin Yutang (1957), proponent of interfaith understanding, Trappist monk, poet and essayist, and Catholic priest Thomas Merton (1965), the seemingly inexhaustible translator Burton Watson (1968), the Vietnamese French translator Liou Kia-hway (1969), the eminent scholar and professor A. C. Graham (1981), Victor Mair (1994), Jean François Billeter (2002), Brook Ziporyn (2003, 2009), Hans-Georg Moeller (2004), and Romain Graziani (2006).  Many others, of course, contributed to knowledge of the Zhuangzi in the West, and the presentation will address as many of them as time permits.  Moreover, much early modern to contemporary Chinese and Japanese work on the Zhuangzi has significantly facilitated understanding and translation into Western languages — so this aspect of Zhuangzi studies will be addressed as well.





Professor Richard John Lynn received his Ph.D. in Asian Languages from Stanford University in 1971 and held positions at several universities in New Zealand, Australia, the U.S.A. and Canada, finally serving as Professor of Chinese thought and literature at the University of Toronto in the Department of East Asian Studies, in which he is now Professor Emeritus.  His publications include Kuan Yün-shih [1286-1324] (Twayne, 1980), Chinese Literature: A Draft Bibliography in Western European Languages (Australian National University Press, 1980), Guide to Chinese Poetry and Drama (G. K. Hall, 1984), The Classic of Changes: A New Translation of the I Ching as Interpreted by Wang Bi (Columbia University Press, 1994; CD-ROM, 1996), The Classic of the Way and Virtue: A New Translation of the Tao-te ching of Laozi as Interpreted by Wang Bi (Columbia University Press, 1999).  He is the editor of James J. Y. Liu, Language—Paradox—Poetics:  A Chinese Perspective (Princeton University Press, 1988).  Current works in progress include a new translation and study of the Daoist classic, the Zhuangzi, with the complete commentary of Guo Xiang (for Columbia University Press), and a book-length study of Huang Zunxian’s literary experiences in Japan (1877– 82).


~ All Are Welcome ~



Enquiry: LTenquiry@cityu.edu.hk