Relational Self and Modern Subject in Classical and Contemporary Chinese Philosophy: From the Role of the Role to the Transformative Self
This article follows the presumption that the Enlightenment concepts of the autonomous human subject and humanism are outdated in their present form. Therefore, they can no longer serve as the ideational basis of contemporary globalised and highly differentiated societies. The individual’s free will can no longer rely on ethical maxims, for in the highly differentiated social and technological contexts of contemporary societies, the latter can no longer serve as reliable criteria for categorical imperatives. This means that both the moral and political autonomy of the individual are endangered. On the other hand, these ideas belong to the most important cultural and philosophical legacies of Europe. Therefore, they must be placed into a contrastive and dialectical relation with similar legacies of non-European cultures. A synthesis of different humanistic traditions is thus not only possible, but also urgently needed. The article focuses on a survey of the subject-related concepts within Chinese philosophy, and exposes their traditional bases as well as the specific Chinese understanding of the notion of the self.
Copyright (c) 2018 Jana S. ROŠKER
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