Monday, April 5, 2010

François Jullien, The silent transformations, Seagull Books, 2011

Version en français

François Jullien presents here, more clearly than in his previous works, the confrontation between Chinese thought and European philosophy. By placing in front of the other, he highlights what each of them has neglected, what it does not want to see.

Is Philosophy an expression of our culture, of the way of thought that the Indo-European languages structure (subject - verb - complement, declensions and conjugations)? Or did she, starting from the Greek source, structure the way we think? It is indeed vain to try to distinguish cause and effect: the two phenomena, inter-weaved, enclose us in a familiar circle.

Our representation of the world proceeds by concepts and definitions with clear contours. It is suitable for mathematics, it encourages the construction of science, but it does not help us to think our aging, the landslides of our emotional life, all these slow changes whose term takes us by surprise.