Compiled by scholars at the court of Liu An, king of Huainan, in the second century B.C.E, The Huainanzi is a tightly organized, sophisticated articulation of Western Han philosophy and statecraft. Outlining "all that a modern monarch needs to know," the text emphasizes rigorous self-cultivation and mental discipline, brilliantly synthesizing for readers past and present the full spectrum of early Chinese thought.
The Huainanzi locates the key to successful rule in a balance of broad knowledge, diligent application, and the penetrating wisdom of a sage. It is a unique and creative synthesis of Daoist classics, such as the Laozi and the Zhuangzi; works associated with the Confucian tradition, such as the Changes, the Odes, and the Documents; and a wide range of other foundational philosophical and literary texts from the Mozi to the Hanfeizi.
The product of twelve years of scholarship, this remarkable translation preserves The Huainanzi's special rhetorical features, such as parallel prose and verse, and showcases a compositional technique that conveys the work's powerful philosophical appeal. This path-breaking volume will have a transformative impact on the field of early Chinese intellectual history and will be of great interest to scholars and students alike.
An excellent and richly annotated translation.
Users of this magnificent contribution to the study of Chinese thought will find here almost everything imaginable.
It is a major accomplishment in every sense of the term.
In sum, this volume bringing to annotated translation all 21 chapters of the Huainanzi will invaluably ease and enhance the work of future scholars.
Benjamin E. Wallacker
[An] epochal achievement.... The Huainanzi vibrates with the authors' intellectual confidence.... this translation of the Huainanzi is a convenient and reassuring shortcut into the heart of traditional China.
This English version earns for the Huainanzi the widespread recognition as anepochal classic that it deserves, and at the same time provides a resource forspecialists. The translations are carefully thought out but evocative.
AcknowledgmentsIntroduction1. Originating in the Way2. Activating the Genuine3. Celestial Patterns4. Terrestrial Forms5. Seasonal Rules6. Surveying Obscurities7. Quintessential Spirit8. The Basic Warp9. The Ruler's Techniques10. Profound Precepts11. Integrating Customs12. Responses of the Way13. Boundless Discourses14. Sayings Explained15. An Overview of the Military16. and 17. A Mountain of Persuasions and A Forest of Persuasions18. Among Others19. Cultivating Effort20. The Exalted Lineage21. An Overview of the EssentialsAppendix A. Key Chinese Terms and Their TranslationsAppendix B. Categorical TermsAppendix C. A Concise Textual History of the Huainanzi and a Bibliography of Huainanzi StudiesIndex