By Anthony C. Yu
Publish yr note: First released October 14, 2008
Throughout his educational occupation, Anthony C. Yu has hired a comparative method of literary research that can pay cautious realization to the spiritual and philosophical components of chinese language and Western texts. His mastery of either canons is still unequalled within the box, and his enormous wisdom of the contexts that gave upward push to every culture offers the principles for perfect comparative scholarship.
In those essays, Yu explores the overlap among literature and faith in chinese language and Western literature. He opens with a primary approach for concerning texts to faith and follows with numerous essays that follow this method of unmarried texts in discrete traditions: the Greek faith in Prometheus; Christian theology in Milton; historical chinese language philosophical proposal in Laozi; and chinese language non secular syncretism in The trip to the West.
Yu's essays juxtapose chinese language and Western texts& mdash; Cratylus subsequent to Xunzi, for example& mdash;and speak about their courting to language and matters, similar to liberal Greek schooling opposed to basic schooling in China. He compares a particular Western textual content and faith to a selected chinese language textual content and faith. He considers the Divina Commedia within the context of Catholic theology along the adventure to the West because it pertains to chinese language syncretism, united through the topic of pilgrimage. but Yu's concentration isn't fullyyt tied to the classics. He additionally considers the fight for human rights in China and the way this subject pertains to historical chinese language social notion and smooth notions of rights within the West.
"In nearly each high-cultural system," Yu writes, "be it the Indic, the Islamic, the Sino-Japanese, or the Judeo& mdash;Christian, the literary culture has built in intimate& mdash;indeed, frequently intertwining-relation to spiritual proposal, perform, establishment, and symbolism." Comparative Journeys is an immense step towards unraveling this complexity, revealing in the course of the expert commentary of texts the extreme intimacy among supposedly disparate languages and cultures.
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Additional resources for Comparative Journeys: Essays on Literature and Religion East and West (Masters of Chinese Studies)
Without the loss of Eden, Christ’s Passion would not have been necessary. Without Ulysses’ evil counsel, Troy would not have fallen and Rome would not have been born. But the sin for which Ulysses and Diomedes are punished is not clearly What Do We Want to Know? 35 stated in the Commedia. ” Later on, in the twenty-sixth canto, describing to Dante the faults committed by Ulysses and Diomedes, Virgil lists three: the trick of the Trojan Horse, the abandonment of Deidamia, and the theft of the Palladium.
21 Desire for knowledge, or natural curiosity, is the inquisitive force that impels Dante from within, just as Virgil and, later, Beatrice are the inquisitive forces that lead him onwards from without. Dante allows himself to be led, inside and out, until he no longer requires any of them—not the intimate desire or the illustrious poet or the blessed beloved—as he stands confronted at long last with the supreme divine vision before which imagination and words fall short, as he tells us in the Commedia’s famous ending: What Is Curiosity?
As a poet, Dante must construct out of words the character of Ulysses and the account of his adventures, as well as the multilayered context in which the king of Ithaca tells his story, but he must also, at the same time, refuse his ardent storyteller the possibility of reaching the desired good. Travel is not enough, words are not enough: Ulysses must fail because, driven by his all- consuming curiosity, he has confused his vocabulary with his science. Because Dante the craftsman has to submit to the adamantine structures of the Christian Otherworld as a framework for his poem, Ulysses’ place in Hell might be largely defined as that of a soul who is guilty of spiritual theft: he has used his intellectual gifts to deceive others.