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Confucianism and the Family

From the publisher’s website:

An interdisciplinary exploration of the Confucian family in East Asia which includes historical, psychocultural, and gender studies perspectives.

The family is central to societies that have been profoundly influenced by the Confucian, and later Neo-Confucian, mandate. This book examines the nature of family continuities and the internal family social and psychological dynamics in societies that comprise the Confucian core of Asia, namely China (including Taiwan), Korea, Japan, Vietnam, and Singapore.

Confucian ideas are discussed from diverse perspectives: religion, philosophy, and history; anthropology and sociology; psychology, psychoanalysis, and psychiatry. Both abiding psychological and social similarities as well as cultural differences are addressed. The volume provides insights on both the positive social cohesiveness found within Asian families and on the possible tensions and even psychopathological responses that may be engendered within a contemporary Confucian family. In addition, the work explores the common Confucian family-cultural background that must be understood to interpret both the scholastic and entrepreneurial success of East Asians wherever they have settled in the Americas and the recent economic push in their homelands.

“The topic of this book is significant, as a part of both the literature on the family as a social institution, and the growing literature reevaluating the Confucian tradition in industrial (and post-industrial) East Asia.” — John Chaffee, Binghamton University, State University of New York

Walter H. Slote is Senior Research Associate in the East Asian Institute of Columbia University, where he is also Adjunct Professor in the Departments of Anthropology and Sociology. George A. De Vos is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of several books, including most recently, Social Cohesion and Alienation: Minorities in the United States and Japan and coeditor (with Lola Romanucci-Ross) of Ethnic Identity.



I Introduction

  1. Confucius and Confucianism | Wei-Ming Tu
  2. Psychocultural Dynamics within the Confucian Family | Walter H. Slote
  3. Confucianism in Comparative Context | Francis L. K. Hsu

II. Historical Dimensions

  1. The Korean Adoption of Neo-Confucianism: The Social Context | John Duncan
  2. The Confucian Incursion into Vietnam | Nguyen Ngoc Huy
  3. A Japanese Legacy of Confucian Thought | George A. De Vos

III. Hierarchy and Gender

  1. Probing the “Three Bonds” and “Five Relationships” in Confucian Humanism | Wei-Ming Tu
  2. The Orthodox Chinese Confucian Social Paradigm versus Vietnamese Individualism | Stephen B. Young
  3. Psychocultural Features of Ancestor Worship in Modern Korean Society | Dawnhee Yim
  4. Male Dominance and Mother Power: The Two Sides of Confucian Patriarchy in Korea | Haejoang Cho
  5. Confucian Gender Role and Personal Fulfillment for Japanese Women | Takie Sugiyama Lebra

IV. Contemporary Exigencies

  1. Confuciansim and the Chinese Family in Singapore: Continuities and Changes | Eddie C. Kuo
  2. Confucian Tradition in the Contemporary Korean Family | Kwang Kyu Lee

V. Psychocultural Continuities

  1. Filial Piety in Taiwanese Popular Thought | David K. Jordan
  2. Mental Illness in Its Confucian Context | Bou-Yong Rhi
  3. Destiny and Determination: Psychocultural Reinforcement in Vietnam | Walter H. Slote
  4. Confucian Family Socialization: The Religion, Morality, and Aesthetics of Propriety | George A. De Vos

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