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Lecture by Tang Prize Laureate Professor William Theodore de Bary

Sep 01, 2016

On September 24, a lecture by Tang Prize Laureate Professor William Theodore de Bary will be held at the Howard Civil Service International House, Taipei. The lecture will commence at 10:50. All are welcome to attend.

Professor William Theodore de Bary is a pioneering figure in the field of Confucian intellectual history. He chaired the Department of East Asian Languages and Culture between 1960 and 1966, and served as Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs and Provost from 1971 to 1978. His research stresses that while China lacks what in the West is known as “liberalism,” this should not be taken as implying that China does not value freedom. In fact, Professor de Bary’s decades of scholarship have clearly demonstrated that Neo-Confucian teachings in late imperial China, particularly during the Ming dynasty, contained values that he has termed “liberal tendencies”. Throughout history, these values have been perpetuated and promoted by Confucian and Neo-Confucian scholar-officials, who Professor de Bary regards as noble gentlemen (junzi) possessing a “prophetic voice” who are willing to take a stand against the abuse of political power. Therefore, Confucianism is by no means an obstacle to modernization; instead, it has served as the core foundation of East Asia’s cultural traditions.

Professor de Bary’s lecture will be read by Dr. Rachel E. Chung, Director of University Committee on Asia & the Middle East at Columbia University. Dr. Chung received her doctorate in Historical Musicology and East Asian Languages & Cultures from Columbia University in 2002, under the tutelage of Professor de Bary.


2016 Tang Prize - Laureate Lectures 2/ Sinology
September 24 10:50-11:50
Howard Civil Service International House, Taipei



2016 Tang Prize - Masters’ Forum 1 / Sinology
September 26 09:30-11:30
National Central University, Taiwan

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