Key Modern Concepts in Translation – Divergence or Convergence?

Paperback, 252 pages
© 2020, Living Learning Culture and Education Company Limited
ISBN: 978-988-78352-2-6
Language: Traditional Chinese
Publishing Date: June, 2020
Price: HK$118


Talking about modern key concepts such as freedom, rule of law and privacy, many Chinese can speak with fervor and assurance. However, where have these concepts come from? Do they exist in traditional Chinese culture? If yes, do they mean the same today as when they were first used? If not, how have they grown from traditional Chinese culture? And how do these key concepts, as they are understood and used nowadays, influence the modern thinking of China? This book studies and tries to answer these questions.

This book divides key concepts of modern China into three scopes – politics and economics; philosophy, science and religion; humanities, arts and others. It also groups the concepts under three themes – universal values, state system and humanities. The book traces the concepts’ origins in traditional Chinese culture (including the thoughts of philosophers in pre-Qin period) and their evolutions afterwards so as to examine their differences and linkages with the foreign concepts. The book extends to compare the Chinese culture with the Western culture (mainly reflected in translations) in recent times, and in the process explains how the translation and use of these concepts influence China’s modern thought system. Each essay in the book discusses one concept; however, some also cover related concepts. The essays review a wide range of Chinese and foreign materials, cite authoritative literature, and discuss the concepts’ past and present in clarifying their origins. It is hoped that this effort can prompt traditional Chinese culture and foreign cultures to learn from each other. At a time when the Western cultural hegemony in the recent 300 years is beginning to decline, mutual learning between different cultures takes on a special significance.