To understand China, it is essential to understand Confucianism. First formulated in the sixth century BCE, the teachings of Confucius would come to dominate Chinese society, politics, economics, and ethics. In this Very Short Introduction, Daniel K. Gardner explores the major philosophical ideas of the Confucian tradition, showing their profound impact on state ideology and imperial government, the civil service examination system, domestic life, and social relations over the course of twenty-six centuries. Gardner focuses on two of the Sage's most crucial philosophical problems-what makes for a good person, and what constitutes good government-and demonstrates the enduring significance of these questions today. This volume shows the influence of the Sage's teachings over the course of Chinese history-on state ideology, the civil service examination system, imperial government, the family, and social relations-and the fate of Confucianism in China in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, as China developed
Oxford University Press Inc
July 9, 2014
About the author
Daniel K. Gardner is Dwight W. Morrow Professor of History at Smith College.