Dissertation > Philosophy, religion > Chinese Philosophy > Qin Dynasty ( 220) > Philosophers before philosophy

On the Yi-ology of the School of Historiography

Author SiManHong
Tutor LinZhongJun
School Shandong University
Course Chinese Philosophy
Keywords distinction of ancient history Yi-ology introducing historical events into Yi-ology tracing to the source of the Commentaries and old Text
CLC B221
Type PhD thesis
Year 2008
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With the development of May Fourth Movement and New Culture Movement, there came into being the school of historiography (suspect and distinguish the historical literatures in Yi-ology) in the 1920’s with the representative Mr. Gu Jiegang. This school’s study exerts a significant influence on the history of traditional Chinese Yi-ology, namely, the renowned theory in the 20th century.This thesis makes an investigation on the feature and achievements of the school’s Yi learning in three respects: its attitude, approach and achievement, with the theories of Mr. Gu Jiegang and Li Jingchi as the focus to study.First of all, this thesis researches their attitude to the Yi-ology history, drawing reference with the western sociological views, which reflects the spirit to seek the truth. This paper regards that the attitude results from both the current situation at that time and the cultural tradition. The former is from the trend of anti-tradition arose by the May Fourth Movement, while the later inherit the tradition of distinguishing the historical literatures in Chinese academic circle.In account of different responses to the issue of "the ancient & the current, the Chinese & the Western", in the 20th century, Chinese Yi-olgoy has its new perspective, new issues and new method, which makes the Yi learning at that time different from the traditional Yi-ology. On one side, the school started new methods and new issues inspired by May Fourth Movement; on the other side, it follows the old tradition, inherits and carries forward the learning style of the sect introducing historical events into the annotations of Yi. We can conclude that it is an anti-tradition based on the traditional learning; while it also is an inheritance of the tradition through the test of anti-tradition. Generally, its spirit of suspicion and seeking the truth is but a one of receiving the tradition with the attitude of anti-tradition.Furthermore, this thesis discusses the concrete approach in which the school studies Yi-ology. By analyzing centrally the author’s preface in the book Distinction of the Ancient History, comes out that the school of historiography in Yi-ology passes down the tradition of introducing historical events into Yi learning to comprehend the Zhouyi objectively and accurately, with the direction of the spirit of suspecting the history and seeking the truth, clearing the aim to pick the real ancient literatures out of the books on sages’ Dao and kings’ power, establish a study standpoint of construction based on destruction, and regard the Zhouyi literature as a historical materials reflecting ancient social situation, thereby, start an external approach to research the Zhouyi by a textual distinction.Mr. Gu Jiegang and Li Jingchi propose to cancel scriptural position of Fu Xi and Shen Nong and establish their position of divinity. Their standpoint of destruction embodies the spirit to seek the truth. To complete the work of constructing ancient history, they choose to distinguish the ancient books which are considered as the important materials to sort out. The Zhouyi completed in the turn of the Yin and Zhou dynasties, is venerated as the source of the Dao, is restored to be an ancient book in the first place by Gu Jiegang and Li Jingchi. They carry out the textual research and collation of the remarks of the lines of hexagrams. Gu Jiegang firstly made a textual research on a few historical stories indicated in the Zhouyi, while Li Jingchi expounded that the Zhouyi was compiled by divine examples, principles as well as the contents of the remarks of lines and so on.Secondly, this thesis elaborates the achievements gained by the school of historiography in Yi learning, and finds that Mr. Gu Jiegang and Li Jingchi carry out their work of tracing to the source of Yi, centering on the issue of occurring of the Text and Commentaries of the Zhouyi.The school compares the divining remarks in the Zhouyi with those on the oracle bones, centering on the process of compiling, discusses the time of the book’s completion and its author as well as the characteristic and structure of the old Text, showing the original feature of divination. In addition, they discern that hexagram remarks are not related to the lines and names by studying the structure of remarks, and apart from the traditional approach of images & numbers and philosophical connotations. Their research fixes a sound foundation for the comprehending the Zhouyi accurately and establishes an actual development history of the Zhouyi.As for Yizhuan, they negate the view that the Commentaries are united with the old Text through discerning their contents are not identical, thereby the relation between Confucius and the Commentaries comes to be the focal point, to discuss this point, they start to trace to the source of Yizhuan, and bring about some basic view on the book’s compilation and its author. Their view breaks the Han tradition totally, and deprives the authority of the three sages, exerting an important influence on the Yi-ology in the 20th century.Finally, this thesis gives an evaluation on the research work of the school, and regards that their attitude of suspecting the ancient history and seeking the truth is worth of carrying forward, meanwhile, their over-suspicion need rectification, to promote a rational suspicion of ancient history and continue the tracing work about the Zhouyi.They regard the literature of the Zhouyi as historical materials, research stories and compiling structure conceived in it in external approach, showing the Zhouyi’s historical value in constructing ancient history. The research fixes a sound foundation for comprehending the Zhouyi objectively and accurately and establishes an occurring history of the Zhouyi. Because of its adventurous assumption, there are prejudiced conclusions.As for their research of the Commentaries and the old Text, there are incredible issues besides its conclusion on the time of the book’s completion and the characteristic of the Commentaries and Text, and the relation between Confucius and Yizhuan need a further research. They discard the learning of the images and numbers and tear apart the inner relation between the remarks and images of the hexagrams, moreover, they do not lay enough emphasis on the philosophical connotation of heaven & human being and thinking of change, etc.To summarize, the school of historiography in Yi-ology carried out the tradition of introducing historical events into the Yi in the 20th century. It occupies an important position at that time.The School researches Yi-ology to arrange ancient history so we can not well comprehend their thought of Yi without grasping their idea of history. In addition, their research achievements on the Commentaries & old Text and the issues evoked need a further study together with the excavated literatures in recent years. The author pays much attention to the two issues above when writing the thesis, but still could not expound them adequately on account of insufficient knowledge.

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