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Is It Scripture or Not?

On Moments of Conceptual Tertium Datur

Ralph Weber

Focusing on examples related to the concept of scripture, I highlight certain moments of indecisiveness in the context of larger processes of possible conceptual change. In these moments, agents involved in the process frequently employ language that in one way or another expresses a conceptual tertium datur. This article sets out to distinguish some of those ways, such as analogy, assertions of resemblance, quasi-status or partial scripturality, oxymoronic adjectival qualification, and exclusivity by selection. The examples draw on four cases, the publication of the Sacred Books of the East series, Petrus Venerabilis's discussion of the Koran, a taxonomy by al-Shahrastānī with regard to the “People of the Book”, and the canonization of the Five Classics in ancient China. Finally, I issue a rallying cry for an entangled and transnational conceptual history. Such an approach is likely to foreground interlingual situations where conceptual indecisiveness is the rule rather than the exception.

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Book Reviews

Anthony Chinaemerem Ajah, S. J. Cooper-Knock, Josette Daemen, Douglas L. Berger, and Hayden Weaver

. Josette Daemen Institute of Political Science, Leiden University Tao Jiang, Origins of Moral-Political Philosophy in Early China. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2021, xiii–xvi +556 pp. Major English-language surveys, featuring varying

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The Mutable, the Mythical, and the Managerial

Raven Narratives and the Anthropocene

Thomas F. Thornton and Patricia M. Thornton

The Anthropocene is rooted in the proposition that human activity has disrupted earth systems to the extent that it has caused us to enter a new geological age. We identify three popular discourses of what the Anthropocene means for humanity's future: the Moral Jeremiad admonishes the transgression of planetary boundaries and advocates reductions to live sustainably within Earth's limits; the Technofix Earth Engineer approach depicts the Age of Humanity as an engineering opportunity to be met with innovative technological solutions to offset negative impacts; and the New Genesis discourse advocates re-enchantment of humanity's connections to earth. By contrast, we find that in many indigenous and premodern narratives and myths disseminated across the North Pacific and East Asia, it is the trickster-demiurge Raven that is most closely linked to environmental change and adaptation. Whereas Raven tales among northern Pacific indigenous communities emphasize a moral ecology of interdependence, creative adaptation, and resilience through practical knowledge (mētis), robustly centralizing Zhou Dynasty elites transposed early Chinese Raven trickster myths with tales lauding the human subjugation of nature. Raven and his fate across the northern Pacific reminds us that narratives of environmental crisis, as opposed to narratives of environmental change, legitimate attempts to invest power and authority in the hands of elites, and justify their commandeering of technological xes in the name of salvation.

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Comparative Perspectives on Divination and Ontology

William Matthews

of human-divine discontinuity in early Greek theogonies, Michael Puett's (2002) discussion of assumptions about the relationship between the human and the divine in early Chinese political and philosophical discourse, and Geoffrey Lloyd's (2012: 59

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Algorithmic Art: Shuffling Space and Time

Art-Science Dialogues and a Techno-Saga

Linda Chiu-han Lai

sunlight based on an ancient Chinese cosmology onto a Hong Kong street in the 1950s, resulting in a dreamlike reality. Chou Bei Suan Ching (1046–226 BCE), a collection of mathematical texts with 246 problems, subscribed to one of three early Chinese

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Enigmatic Concepts

On the History of Riddles in China and the West

Anne Schmiedl

Haring, “Malagasy Riddling,” 170. 105 See, for example, Yuri Pines, “From Teacher to Subject: Ministers Speaking to Their Rulers, from Yan Ying 晏嬰 to Li Si 李斯,” in Facing the Monarch: Modes of Advice in the Early Chinese Court , ed. Garret P. S

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Beyond Oracular Ambiguity

Divination, Lies, and Ontology in Early Greek Literature

Olaf Almqvist

analogist assumptions. Indeed, rather than overwriting earlier understandings, as Puett (2002) has described in early China, these ideas entered into an increasingly lively debate on the nature of the cosmos and how humans and gods interact therein. While

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Lu Yang's Cancer Baby

Coercions of the Image

Jennifer Dorothy Lee

and classical world in China offers a sustained conceptual interplay between the sensible and the super-sensible ( Cai 2004: 22 ). Robin R. Wang asserts that in early Chinese texts the structural component of the term designating things in their

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Post-Hellenistic Perspectives on Divination, the Individual, and the Cosmos

Elsa Giovanna Simonetti

Become a God: Cosmology, Sacrifice, and Self-Divinization in Early China . Cambridge, MA : Harvard University Press . Rosenberger , Veit , ed. 2013 . Divination in the Ancient World: Religious Options and the Individual . Stuttgart : Franz

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Of Words, Change, and Transplantations

Reshaping Chinese Concepts between Empire and Modernity

Federico Brusadelli, Anne Schmiedl, and Phillip Grimberg

,” Oriens Extremus 51 (2012): 9–24, here 14. 15 Geoffrey MacCormack, “Rectification of Names in Early Chinese Legal and Political Thought,” ARSP: Archiv für Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie / Archives for Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy 72, no. 3