FAH/DPHIL Lecture Series – “The Snail and its Horns: Practical Philosophy Inspired by the Zhuangzi” by Prof. Carine Defoort, University of Leuven, Belgium
2022-04-06 @ 5:30 pm ~ 7:00 pm
In the last century, Western jargon and methodologies have overwhelmed the study of early Chinese texts. In an attempt to somewhat redress the balance, this paper retrieves a core notion from the Zhuangzi, “disputation” or “distinctions” (bian), to reflect upon a contemporary Western debate, namely about the exclusion of non-Western sources at philosophy departments. The detailed analysis of one anecdote about two states fighting each other on the horns of a snail leads to a view on disputation and its limits. By applying these insights to the “legitimacy of Chinese philosophy” debate, the Zhuangzi can inspire insights and attitudes that tend to be overlooked.